Brits give access to all phone records

Daily Mail:

Officials from the top of Government to lowly council officers will be given unprecedented powers to access details of every phone call in Britain under laws coming into force tomorrow.

The new rules compel phone companies to retain information, however private, about all landline and mobile calls, and make them available to some 795 public bodies and quangos.

The move, enacted by the personal decree of Home Secretary Jacqui Smith, will give police and security services a right they have long demanded: to delve at will into the phone records of British citizens and businesses.

...

Records will detail precisely what calls are made, their time and duration, and the name and address of the registered user of the phone.

The files will even reveal where people are when they made mobile phone calls. By knowing which mast transmitted the signal, officials will be able to pinpoint the source of a call to within a few feet. This can even be used to track someone's route if, for example, they make a call from a moving car.

Files will also be kept on the sending and receipt of text messages.

By 2009 the Government plans to extend the rules to cover internet use: the websites we have visited, the people we have emailed and phone calls made over the net.

...
As you can guess the terrorist rights crowd is upset. The information will make it easier to trace terrorist as was shown in the recent doc plot. The main benefit is that it gives the telecom companies immunity for supplying the info. That is something the terrorist rights crowd in the US has been attempting to punish.

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