Content type: News & Analysis
6th July 2021
Around the world, we see migration authorities use technology to analyse the devices of asylum seekers. The UK via the Policing Bill includes immigration officers amongst those who can exercise powers to extract information from electronic devices. There are two overarching reasons why this is problematic: The sole provision in the Policing Bill to extract information rests on voluntary provision and agreement, which fails to account for the power imbalance between individual and state. This…
Content type: News & Analysis
29th June 2021
It is difficult to imagine a more intrusive invasion of privacy than the search of a personal or home computer ... when connected to the internet, computers serve as portals to an almost infinite amount of information that is shared between different users and is stored almost anywhere in the world. R v Vu 2013 SCC 60,  3 SCR 657 at  and . The controversial Police Crime Sentencing and Courts Bill includes provision for extracting data from electronic devices. The Bill…
9th July 2019
In March 2019, Privacy International responded to a call for evidence for an inquiry by the UK Parliament's Joint Committee on Human Rights into "The Right to Privacy (Article 8) and the Digital Revolution". Our suggestions included that, the human rights framework should support: Increasing individuals’ control over their data to encourage the design of technologies that protect peoples’ autonomy and privacy. Increasing security to result in more rights and protections for…
5th July 2019
In April, the UK government published what it called "plans for a world-leading package of online safety measures that also supports innovation and a thriving digital economy". The White Paper which sets out plans for establishing in law a new duty of care towards users, overseen by a new regulatory body, aimed at making companies more accountable when it comes to illegal activity and content deemed "harmful", but not illegal. As part of the plans, a public consultation was launched. While…
30th April 2019
In December 2018, PI responded to the UK Information Commissioner's (ICO) Call for Views on a Code of Practice for the use of personal information in political campaigns. The consultation followed on from the ICO's policy report Democracy Disrupted?, published in July 2018, which recommended that the Government should legislate at the earliest opportunity to introduce a statutory Code of Practice under the Data Protection Act 2018 for the use of personal information in campaigns. Although not…
30th April 2019
This week a public debate on facial recognition will take place in Westminster Hall. Following a public request for comment by Darren Jones MP (Science and Technology Committee), we sent our responses to the questions asked. Below you can find the integral content of our letter. 1. Would you consent to the police scanning your face in a crowd to check you’re not a criminal? Facial recognition technology uses cameras with software to match live footage of people in public with images…
25th February 2019
In October 2018, Privacy International submitted to the public consultation on the “Consolidated Guidance to Intelligence Officers and Service Personnel on the Detention and Interviewing of Detainees Overseas, and on the Passing and Receipt of Intelligence Relating to Detainees” (“Consolidated Guidance”) held by the Investigatory Powers Commissioner’s Office (“IPCO”). Privacy International’s submission addresses the portions of the Consolidated Guidance on “the Passing and Receipt of…
8th November 2018
Today, Privacy International has filed complaints against seven data brokers (Acxiom, Oracle), ad-tech companies (Criteo, Quantcast, Tapad), and credit referencing agencies (Equifax, Experian) with data protection authorities in France, Ireland, and the UK. It’s been more than five months since the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) came into effect. Fundamentally, the GDPR strengthens rights of individuals with regard to the protection of their data, imposes more stringent…
26th April 2018
24th April 2018
A new Privacy International report based on an international collaborative investigation carried out by 40 NGOs in 42 countries has found alarming weaknesses in the oversight arrangements that are supposed to govern the sharing of intelligence between state intelligence agencies, including in the UK. Privacy International urges governments to enact urgent reforms and improve public understanding about the scope of intelligence sharing and the safeguards and oversight currently in place.
1st March 2018
21st February 2018
Privacy International's briefing on the UK's Data Protection Bill for the second reading in the House of Commons.
18th December 2017
This briefing consolidates Privacy International's concerns on the UK Data Protection Bill as it reached Report Stage in the House of Lords.
1st December 2017
The powers set out in the Investigatory Powers Act are wide ranging, opaque and lacking in adequate safeguards. The Government have now published updated Draft Codes of Practice for certain parts of the Act. Unfortunately, the Codes do little to solve the Act’s problems. Instead, they add little transparency, occasionally expand powers, and undermine some of the limited safeguards in the Investigatory Powers Act. These Codes demand close scrutiny. The unusually short timeframe for the…
21st November 2017
17th November 2017
Thornsec is a piece of software developed by Privacy International’s Tech Team which is an automated way to deploy, test, and audit internal and external services for an organisation, saving a lot of time and creating a sustainable security model. We are using this software to run all of Privacy International’s services – website, calendar, project management tools, Tor hidden services, VPNs. The whole system runs on two servers and the whole cost is around US$1000 to set up. Thornsec is…
9th November 2017
This briefing covers Part 3 (law enforcement processing) and Part 4 (intelligence services processing) of the Data Protection Bill.
30th October 2017
Our full briefing is here.
12th October 2017
Privacy International's response to the inquiry by the House of Lords Select Committee on Artificial Intelligence.
6th October 2017
Privacy International welcomes the aim of this Bill (Data Protection Bill), “to create a clear and coherent data protection regime”, and to update the UK data protection law, including by bringing the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the Data Protection Law Enforcement Directive (DPLED) - into the UK domestic system. This is Privacy International’s briefing on the Data Protection Bill for second reading in the House of Lords
10th May 2017
Privacy International welcomes the willingness of the UK government to implement the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which provides stronger standards of protection of personal data to those contained in the EU Directive 1995, whose provisions were implemented in the Data Protection Act 1998. Improved rights and enforcement measures will generate greater trust and therefore greater engagement in the digital environment, which will in turn benefit the economy. This briefing…
25th June 2016
This stakeholder report is a submission by Privacy International (PI). PI is a human rights organisation that works to advance and promote the right to privacy and fight surveillance around the world. PI wishes to bring concerns about the protection and promotion of the right to privacy in the United Kingdom before the Human Rights Committee for consideration in the United Kingdom's upcoming review.
8th March 2016
In his first report to the UN Human Rights Council (the main UN human rights political body composed of 47 states from around the world), the UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Privacy has offered a scathing critique on the UK Investigatory Powers Bill. In particular the Rapporteur noted how bulk surveillance powers, including bulk hacking, are disproportionate and violate the right to privacy as established by human rights courts. The Rapporteur noted that the powers proposed in the…
8th February 2016
In response to the Government publishing proposed new surveillance powers in November 2015, Privacy International submitted this highly detailed analysis to the Joint Committee on the Draft Investigatory Powers Bill in December. Our report proposes significant changes across the Bill to ensure better privacy protection while still enabling public bodies to have the powers they need.
20th March 2015
On 20 March 2015, Privacy International and Open Rights Group submitted comments on the UK Government's draft Equipment Interference Code of Practice. The UK has been hacking for over a decade, yet the release of the draft Code of Practice is the first time the UK intelligence services have sought public authorisation for their activities. Indeed, it is the first time the intelligence services have publicly acknowledged they engage in hacking. Unfortunately, the draft Code of Practice is too…