02/10/2007

RIPA goes live

The Regulation of Investigatory Powers (RIP) Act has actually been live for a while, but from today all telecoms companies must store records of all phone calls (and mobile networks SMS messages) for a year.

Though the actual conversation are not recorded (and SMS messages are not saved), but the caller and called numbers (and how long they talked) must be stored, for SMS the origination and destination number are stored.

Telcos have always stored the data (they use it for billing), but it's now who has access to it which comes into force. Around 650 organisations will be able to request records under the RIP Act, from normal agencies such as government, police, security forces to councils and even the charity commission and various quangos.

It's been slipped through as "helping to fight terrorism" ...
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