This is, according to the British version of the magazine Wired, ” one of the most powerful and controversial surveillance tools at work in a democratic country ”.
In a long investigation, Wired reveals that for the past two years, two British Internet service providers have indeed been testing a mass surveillance tool in complete secrecy. It would allow the Interior Office and at the National Crime Agency to collect a large set of metadata related to the online activity of citizens.
The exact nature of the data collected is a mystery, but it must certainly include the IP of the Internet user and that of the sites visited, the date and time of the visit, or the quantity of data transferred. Very precise data, which can be kept for a year if a judge authorizes it.
Also to discover in video:
A small-scale test?
Contacted by Wired, most of the big British ISPs kicked in touch, refusing to raise the subject … apart from Vodafone, which indicated not to participate in the test.
The Office of the Interior was also laconic, simply recalling that it was a test to ” Small scale ”Intended to determine the data that would be relevant to recover. He also specified that the data in question would be recorded only if it proved necessary and proportionate, in order to fight against ” serious crime “.
This does not prevent such mass collection techniques deployed in the most total opacity from questioning. This debate dates back to 2016 and the adoption by Parliament of the Investigatory Powers Act, which has increased the State’s surveillance powers tenfold and introduced the obligation to monitor browsing history by ISPs.
A law that had been crushed at the time by the defenders of digital freedoms, in particular Edward Snowden: ” the United Kingdom has just legalized the most extreme surveillance in the history of Western democracies ” he tweeted. The law must be reviewed in a year, the opportunity, perhaps, to reverse this Orwellian measure.
Source: Wired UK