The Data Protection thread

The Herald Scotland has a pro ID Card piece today:

Personal details are more than passwords
http://www.heraldscotland.com/comment/columnists/personal-details-are-more-than-passwords.24904445

A national ID card scheme may seem Orwellian to some, but in an age when we're all anonymous, tapping away on an iPad that could just as easily be in Newton Mearns or New Delhi, we must accept that old methods of personal verification are broken and that we need a new system.

If the government doesn't provide such a system then the private sector will surely step in. Personally, I'd be more comfortable with my public records being tied to a national ID card than to my Google account.
The assumption being that Government is always completely benign . . .
 
[Copied from the Data Loss thread as this is such an important issue]

The Herald Scotland has a pro ID Card piece today:

Personal details are more than passwords
http://www.heraldscotland.com/comment/columnists/personal-details-are-more-than-passwords.24904445

A national ID card scheme may seem Orwellian to some, but in an age when we're all anonymous, tapping away on an iPad that could just as easily be in Newton Mearns or New Delhi, we must accept that old methods of personal verification are broken and that we need a new system.

If the government doesn't provide such a system then the private sector will surely step in. Personally, I'd be more comfortable with my public records being tied to a national ID card than to my Google account.
The assumption being that Government is always completely benign . . .
 
[Copied from the Data Loss thread as this is such an important issue]

They also miss the point that at the moment it is entirely voluntary to give your details to Google, although it's hard to opt out. If the government mandates that you hand over the information then opting out gets a lot harder.

I don't use Gmail, or any of the other large providers, for my personal email. If someone wants to read it then they've either got to get it from the other end, intercept it in transit or come talk to me.
 
[Copied from the Data Loss thread as this is such an important issue]

Worse is this latest Whitehall plan to share all our data:

Revealed: Whitehall plans to share your private data
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/11009405/Revealed-Ministers-blueprint-to-share-private-data.html

Details of the financial history, qualifications and property wealth of millions of Britons could be shared across Whitehall for the first time without their consent, the Telegraph can disclose.

Information including voters’ driving licences, criminal records, energy use and even whether they use a bus pass could be shared under a radical blueprint to link up thousands of state databases used by schools, councils, police and civil servants.

. . . Ministers believe the ability to aggregate and “mine” citizens’ data under a new legal framework will allow them to better monitor economic growth and population movements, identify troubled families and elderly people in need of support, and cut fraud.
What's really worrying is that they are apparently planning some kind of change to Data Protection laws:

The proposals, drawn up by Francis Maude, will be contained in a White Paper published in the Autumn. It may feature draft legislation for introduction after the 2015 election, according to sources.

. . . At present, people’s personal information is governed by the Data Protection Act and a web of legislation, often decades old, that underpins different government bodies – making it all but impossible for it to be shared outside one department without the specific investigatory powers granted to police and tax inspectors.
This could be something to do with repealing the Human Rights Act and creating a Bill of Rights. Either way this is a particularly worrying piece in the Telegraph - not least because it was David Cameron who ensured the ID Cards Act was repealed and it now appears he's been got at too . . .
 

Sheila Struthers

Well-known member
Thanks for giving this a thread all of its own...it will be valuable to have someone like yourself following the legal niceties of what is to happen to the Data Protection Act.

As I said on the other thread, looks like a done deal to me...
 

Admin

Administrator
Justification for bypassing consent?

Public often think that if one part of government has data then the whole of government has it." They’re surprised government’s not doing it already.
Communication / transparency

It was questioned how the “outside world” should be informed that the process was happening, with suggestions about communicating the process to the media and involving the public in discussions.
Representation

Questions were raised regarding the power of representatives to represent their organisations in discussions. Linked to this were questions about how “sign-off” would take place – who would need to sign off papers, when and how? It was agreed that there would be a parallel sign-off process in Government and civil society. Also connected to this were conversations over who should write the papers, with the suggestion put forward that the Cabinet Office should draft and then circulate for comments.
Naivete thy name is 'civil society
There was some concern raised over the tailored public services proposals. Clarity was needed over how, why, and what for data would be used. Government needed to be transparent about where it wants to do things to people. There also needed to be some firm examples of where data sharing is necessary.

It was stated that the trend seemed to be that government wanted to share data about vulnerable people, which raised the question of whether this is paternalistic? And if not, is it going to apply to everyone else?
 

Sheila Struthers

Well-known member
Government IT expert is caught with child porn stash

...but why did Downing Street keep it secret for six months?

Police discovered indecent images were being streamed from Mr Crump’s home computer IP address in April last year.
But incredibly last November – while he was still being investigated – he received a promotion at the Cabinet Office, where he had previously worked in internal communications.
When Crump, 39, was arrested in January this year Scotland Yard did not publicise the arrest. He was only named when he was charged last month, but even then the Metropolitan Police did not reveal his role at the Cabinet Office.
Details can only now be revealed after he pleaded guilty to four charges of making and distributing indecent images of children.
Yesterday Crump – who has spent a decade working in technology and communications for Government offices, including the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the Central Office of Information – insisted: ‘I’m not a paedophile.’
The case has reignited a row over secret arrests by police involving government officials accused of child porn offences.
Lib Dem MP John Hemming said: ‘When they sat on the case for such a long time and then hid the fact that he is a senior civil servant, it causes great concern.
It does raise serious questions and alarm bells are ringing loudly.’ The Cabinet Secretary has already been asked to investigate the handling of a separate arrest of one of David Cameron’s closest aides.
Patrick Rock, deputy director of the No 10 policy unit, was arrested on suspicion of hoarding images of naked children in February.
The National Crime Agency refused to confirm or deny Mr Rock had been held or the existence of any inquiry, which was finally revealed by this newspaper.
Mr Rock was brought in to Downing Street as deputy head of policy in 2011, and was involved in drawing up Government policy on tackling online child abuse images.
Although Sebastian Crump’s work did not involve any child protection issues, the Mail can reveal he landed a government job after working as a children’s charity website manager.
The IT expert worked for Action for Children, which helps support vulnerable and neglected children, between 1998 and 1999.
Last year while he was under investigation, he shared a picture on his Facebook page urging 11-year-old children to be safe on the internet.
City of Westminster Magistrates Court heard that Crump hoarded nearly 400 indecent images of children, 82 of which were classed as the most extreme.
At his £800,000 terraced home in Wandsworth, South London, police found 375 images and video files involving child and animal abuse.
The court heard that Crump’s marriage had collapsed following his arrest. He pleaded guilty on Thursday to three counts of making an indecent image of a child and one count of distributing an indecent photograph of a child.
But yesterday Crump insisted he was not a paedophile.
 

Dad23

Well-known member
I don't use Gmail, or any of the other large providers, for my personal email.
Quite rightly too. In today's news Google shopped someone to the police for having images of child abuse in his gmail account. Google's software apparently automatically scans for stuff like that. What next? You get reported for a misdeclaration on your tax return, for an email admission that you've driven over the speed limit or for lying to your boss about the reason for your day off yesterday?
 

Sheila Struthers

Well-known member
Excellent Letter

In The Telegraph.

We must resist Whitehall's centralised database
The Human Rights and Data Protection Acts are the most effective barriers to the proposed database of personal data


SIR – When David Cameron came to power he quickly repealed Labour’s Identity Cards Act. He clearly appreciated the intrusive power of the underlying National Identity Register which linked the ID cards to other Whitehall databases. Now we hear (report, August 4) that the Cabinet Office is again planning a centralised database of all our personal data.
Our personal privacy is protected by Article 8 of the Human Rights Act (the right to respect for private and family life) and specifically by Schedule 3 of the Data Protection Act, which requires that our explicit consent is obtained by a public authority before our sensitive and personal information is stored and shared.
Without the Human Rights Act it would have been more difficult to get the Identify Cards Act repealed, the Contact Point child database shut down and plans for a centralised medical database halted.
The Conservatives have made great play of their dislike of the Human Rights Act and it appears that senior Whitehall mandarins, clearly piqued at their powers being repeatedly challenged, are now fully on board with its repeal. Whitehall is well aware that the new data-sharing projects cannot proceed unless the Human Rights Act is repealed and the Data Protection Act amended to remove any requirement to obtain our consent before sharing our sensitive and personal information.
This point was confirmed in a recent Human Rights Act judgment (R v Secretary of State) preventing the needless release of trivial information on spent convictions. The Supreme Court commented on the “growing concern about surveillance and the collection and use of personal data by the state” and that the “protection offered by the common law in this area has, by comparison, been of a limited nature”. We must maintain our Human Rights and Data Protection Acts as a barrier against Whitehall aggregating all our personal information under central control.

Tristram C Llewellyn Jones
Ramsey, Isle of Man
 

Admin

Administrator
Spot the difference?

I find it quite ironic that the state practically throws away the key when it comes to Andy Coulson et al hacking the phones of celebrities and victims of crime, yet have absolutely no compunction about stealing, storing and sharing our personal data on a routine basis - usually to use against us in the form of some intervention or other to ensure we meet our state dictated outcomes.

A crime is a crime. I for one can't spot the difference.
 

Diane

HEdups
David Cameron repealed the Labour proposed version of the massive database of all citizens' data.

No doubt that was a political move guaranteed to generate goodwill and relief amongst those who still
believe that we have a choice of parties. (Well, we have, but they are all the same).

Now he wants what every government official seem to want: a huge database of everyone's information. Not
the same thing at all (sarcasm).

Ironically, as soon as they begin to harvest data it will be obsolete because the body citizen is constantly moving and changing. Not to mention that many folks just downright avoid telling the truth to anything intrusive. It will be a total cock-up. But what the hey? They don't pay for it....
 
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Looks like the Daily Telegraph is now on board with the issues:

Can we trust Whitehall with all our personal details?
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/11010922/Can-we-trust-Whitehall-with-all-our-personal-details.html

The old rule that data given for one purpose should not be used for another is being undermined. Essentially, the Government seeks the power to do precisely what the Data Protection Act will not let the rest of us do.
And the Minister felt obliged to issue an immediate response:

Francis Maude responds: 'This Government is not interested in building large databases'
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/letters/11013304/Francis-Maude-responds-This-Government-is-not-interested-in-building-large-databases.html

SIR – Citizens rightly have concerns about privacy and how personal data is handled. We share such concerns: one of this Government’s first acts was to cancel the illiberal ID card scheme.

We are not interested in building large databases. We will not weaken the Data Protection Act. Nor will we collect more data about people, or use information in ways beyond those that the public already assume we do.

At present, the data Whitehall holds is divided between departments. There is no simple way to cross-reference it, if indeed it can be done at all.

This means that the public miss out on more effective, tailored services, and that the taxpayer loses billions to fraudsters.

So we think it’s worth exploring, in a very open and transparent way, whether we can use the data we already have more effectively.

We have said from the start of this process that if civil liberty and privacy groups do not find our proposals proportionate and sensible, we would find it difficult to go ahead.
The 'tailored services' sound byte needs to be taken apart and sent back to the Minister in little pieces. Basically that's just going behind peoples backs which totally goes against culture.

They are also perpetrating the 'not building a database' nonsense. A system that sucks information from different databases is no different.

It's basically 'all you details on one screen' that they are after with flags to tell you are too fat, too drunk, too non PC, too religious, too independently minded . . .
 

Dad23

Well-known member
At present, the data Whitehall holds is divided between departments. There is no simple way to cross-reference it, if indeed it can be done at all.
When I've given data to one department it's for that department's use only. I did not implicitly consent to that data being combined with data provided to other departments. Such combining of data is in itself a building of the "larger database" that Maude says he has no interest in. Further, and more alarmingly, the government assumes the average citizen is too stupid to realise that simply by combining databases the government are extracting additional data as such data collation is greater than the sum of its parts. Several trivial pieces of information on a citizen which individually provide nothing useful can, when combined, provide a very detailed profile of the person that can be used to the individual's disadvantage. Such collated and mined data also have a greater value to advertisers, government "partners" and collaborators (like fake charities) and any government employee who wants to harass or intimidate the individual.
 

Admin

Administrator
You have to wonder WTF happened to NO2ID and all the anti ID card screamers. Are we alone in understanding the implications of a data stealing free for all, which is exactly what is being proposed (without our consent and preferably without our knowledge)?

:hurt:
 

Admin

Administrator
A new Mega State Database?

Allan Norman from Celtic Knot is on the case with this brilliant post.

A new Mega State Database?

Data-Sharing or Data-Processing?

The issue of the right or otherwise to share information between bodies is so embedded in the public imagination that it may come as a surprise if I say that the Data Protection Act as originally enacted had nothing to say about data-sharing at all.

What it had a lot to say about was data-processing. While that sounds dull, conjuring up images of poorly-paid data-inputters, the truth is that just about anything we do with data, including sharing it, is data-processing.

The reason this matters now is that Francis Maude’s argument appears to raise an idea that different organs of the State are all part of the same big entity. We are being invited to stop thinking about this as sharing between one organisation and another, and start thinking about it as a single entity, putting forward proposals that do not involve sharing with anyone outside itself. However, the short legal answer to that invitation is that creating a consolidated database or sharing databases internally is just as much data-processing as is data-sharing between organisations.
Read it all! :clap2:
 

Sheila Struthers

Well-known member
There's Big Brother Watch, Privacy International, Electronic Frontiers Foundation etc, but if you name your organisation No2ID you're pretty much a one trick pony.
That last one is a new one on me but I have my doubts about most of these organisations...

Personal experience with NO2ID Scotland has made me look into these issues a bit:

http://www.home-education.biz/forum...-up-to-holyrood-s-own-id-card-or-does-it.html

Also, was looking for a few old NO2ID forum threads wrt all this and they seem to be gone or going (unless I'm being even more stupid than usual). They were all up there a wee while back - including the one where I state about the repeated, detailed contact with Geraint Bevan of NO2ID Scotland wrt Girfec etc starting 2009 IIRC.

This thread seems to be gone (no cache):

NO2ID • View topic - Scottish Review: Big Brother Scotland
forum.no2id.net › News › Articles & Publications
8 Oct 2010 - 8 posts - ‎3 authors
Every child monitored from the womb • Every child's file available for 'sharing' Part I of a Scottish Review investigation by Kenneth Roy Tuesday ...
You've visited this page 2 times. Last visit: 07/08/14
This one is still here as a cache only:

Scottish Gov't PR: Privacy principles to improve public - No2ID
forum.no2id.net › News › Articles & Publications
3 Sep 2009 - 8 posts - ‎4 authors
Discussion of this issue... http://www.home-education.biz/forum/gen ... #post24374. Search forums for girfec, ecare, laming, contact point etc for ...
http://webcache.googleusercontent.c...wtopic.php?p=111292+&cd=3&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=uk

There were several others...

Down the memory hole.
 
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