Tuesday, 29 January 2008

Investigations and privacy: possible issues?

Here is the Statewatch newsletter of 22 January 2008 (01/08)Home page: http://www.statewatch.org - Enlightening if applied to cybercrime... Note also the old partnership bewteen UK and USA

"6. UK-USA: 1948 UKUSA agreement and ECHELON states behind "Server inthe Sky" project: Press coverage reporting that the FBI is seeking toset up a global alliance to target suspected terrorists and criminalshas not so far noted the historical origins of "Server in the Sky"project to collect and exchange personal biometrics and data. Thegroup behind the initiative is the "International InformationConsortium" comprised of the USA, UK, Australia, Canada and NewZealand. The same five states started intelligence gathering in theCold War era under the 1948 UKUSA agreement which set up a globalmonitoring system led by the NSA (USA) and Government CommunicationsHQ in the UK (GCHQ).And the very same five states set up the ECHELON surveillance systemin the 1980s which extended communications gathering on a huge scalefrom military objectives to political and economic targets bytrawling the ether for keywords, phrases and groups.Tony Bunyan, Statewatch editor, comments:"The USA and the UK have been running global surveillance systemssince the start of the Cold War through the NSA and GCHQ and theirscope was extended by the ECHELON system in the 1980s. For nearly 60years, since 1948, these hidden systems have been beyond democraticcontrol and now we see this alliance extending its tentacles to covernot just suspected terrorists but criminals as well. Its activitiesare likely to be as unaccountable as ever, by-passing standards ofprivacy and data protection."

- European Parliament: Echelon report:http://www.statewatch.org/news/2001/sep/echelon.pdf

- Appraisal of technologies of political control (for the EP STOA Committee):http://www.statewatch.org/news/2005/may/steve-wright-stoa-rep.pdf

- European Union and the FBI launch global surveillance system: AStatewatch report, 10 February 1997:http://www.statewatch.org/NEWS4A.HTM

- News report: FBI wants instant access to British identity data -Americans seek international database to carry iris, palm and fingerprints (Guardian, link):http://www.guardian.co.uk/print/0%2C%2C332065468-103690%2C00.html

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