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[TheGuardian] Theresa May unveils UK surveillance measures in wake of Snowden claims

New surveillance powers will be given to the police and security services, allowing them to access records tracking every UK citizen’s use of the internet without any judicial check, under the provisions of the draft investigatory powers bill unveiled by Theresa May. [...]

The draft bill explicitly includes in statute for the first time powers for the bulk collection of large volumes of communications and other personal data by MI5, GCHQ, MI6 and for their use of “equipment interference powers” – the ability to hack computers and phones around the world – for purposes of national security, serious crime and economic wellbeing. [...]

In her statement, May also revealed for the first time that successive governments since 2001 have issued secret directions to internet and phone companies to hand over the communications data of British citizens in bulk to the security services. [...]

May revealed that the use of these powers – which show that GCHQ was also engaged in mass surveillance programmes on British citizens using their communications data – under the 1984 Telecommunications Act will be put on a more explicit footing in the new legislation and be subject to the same safeguards as other bulk powers. [...]

Jim Killock, the executive director of the privacy campaigning body Open Rights Group, sees the draft bill as an attempt to secure even more intrusive powers. “At first glance, it appears that this bill is an attempt to grab even more intrusive surveillance powers and does not do enough to restrain the bulk collection of our personal data by the secret services,” he said. [...]

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/nov/04/theresa-may-surveillance-me...