Friday, March 30, 2007

Enquiry into a "Surveillance Society"

An enquiry is being conducted by the UK Parliament into the surveillance of citizens by the Government. Here is a short extract from the latest press release.

The UK Parliament has launched an enquiry into the surveillance conducted on citizens by the Government. It will investigate the growing number and scope of government databases holding increasing amounts of information on citizens. The Home Affairs Committee will conduct the inquiry, called 'A Surveillance Society?', so that it can produce rules for Government to follow when building up increasing amounts of sensitive and private information on the general public. "The inquiry will consider the growth of numerous public and private databases and forms of surveillance," said a Committee statement. "They either derive directly from the work of the Home Office and its related public functions or are controversial because whilst they offer the potential to play a part in the fight against crime their use may impinge on individual liberty." "The inquiry will focus on Home Office responsibilities such as identity cards, the National DNA Database and CCTV, but where relevant will look also at other departments’ responsibilities in this area, for instance the implications of databases being developed by the Department of Health and the Department for Education and Skills for use in the fight against crime," it said.

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