Theresa May: Internet data will be recorded under new spy laws

What is Theresa May proposing?

  • Allow ministers to retain the power to sign off warrants for intrusive surveillance
  • Force internet and communications companies to retain customer usage data for up to a year
  • Protect the ability of GCHQ and MI5 to bulk collect communications data and to hack in to a suspect’s electronic devices

Is it controversial?

Potentially. Privacy campaigners see the new requirement for everyone’s internet records to be stored as a major extension of surveillance powers

Why is the government doing this?

The government sees the bill as “maintaining intelligence agencies’ current capabilities”. David Cameron described it as “one of the most important pieces of legislation” in this parliament and said it goes “to the heart of the Government’s duty to keep the British public safe.”

Haven’t we been here before?

Theresa May put forward a similar bill during coalition in 2013 – nicknamed the Snoopers Charter – however it was blocked by the Liberal Democrats over concerns about how strict its measures were.

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