The British government’s proposals to extend state monitoring of internet use have come in for stern criticism from within the ruling coalition itself.
The government want new powers to log who is emailing and calling whom, and which websites are being visited.
Even though there are few details about the plans, they have enraged civil liberties campaigners.
The Conservative former shadow home secretary, David Davis MP, said: “It’s simply uneccessary and even if they want to do it for some people, which is perfectly proper, terrorists and criminals alike, they should get a court order. Get a warrant, go to a magistrate. That’s what we’ve done for 100 years in this country, why should we change now?”
A report in the Sunday Times newspaper claimed the government’s eavesdropping agency, GCHQ, would be able to access information in ‘real time’.
The Home Secretary said the new powers would help bring criminals, paedophiles and terrorists to justice. The measures are expected to include social media websites and web-based telephone services.
The deputy prime minister said any new measures would be proportionate and would not sacrifice civil liberties in the UK.