Welcome to the Big Brother Watch newsletter!
This week formal launch of the new Police National Database, a system which will link together intelligence and criminal records information held by Police forces across the United Kingdom.
This new database will hold information on up to fifteen million people across the United Kingdom – almost a quarter of the UK’s population.
Up to six million of these people will be people who have never been convicted of carrying out any offence. The database will also contain information about people who have been subjected to violent physical and sexual attacks.
While it makes sense for Police forces to share information about suspects and convicted criminals, ordinary members of the public should not have their personal details logged in this way.
At Big Brother Watch, we are calling for the to should come forward and admit they’ve made a mistake. Nobody has a problem with a database of criminals – but we should never build a database of innocent people and crime victims.
Click here to see Big Brother Watch Director Daniel Hamilton discussing the database on the BBC One Show.
Daniel Hamilton on the BBC1 One Show discussing the new Police national database.
Daniel Hamilton on ITV News discussing the potential hacking of the 2011 Census data.
Daniel Hamilton on the Iain Dale Show on LBC discussing a proposed ban on smoking on private vehicles.
Privacy campaign group Big Brother Watch said it was concerned that details of members of the public could be logged on the database.
Spokesman Daniel Hamilton said: "Nobody has a problem with a database of criminals but we should never build a database of innocent people and crime victims.
"The risk of this data falling into the hands of criminals is too horrifying to comprehend."
The Telegraph - Lulzsec census hack reports 'concerning'
Big Brother Watch's Daniel Hamilton says it would be worrying if rumours that Britain's Census 2011 information had been stolen turned out to be true.
The Independent - Warnings over launch of national crime database
"The risk of this data falling into the hands of criminals is too horrifying to comprehend," said Daniel Hamilton, director of Big Brother Watch. "But if they were able to take the Soca website offline, how are we to have any particular confidence that this database won't fall into the wrong hands?"
Daily Express - Help! The Police have broken in
Daniel Hamilton, of the Big Brother Watch campaign group, said: “This case is symptomatic of the rapid growth of the nanny state. For police officers to be entering people’s homes without invitation is at best hugely invasive and, at worse, legally dubious. Trespassing on private property, regardless of any good intention you may have, is a crime.
Home owners should be responsible for ensuring the security of their property, not busy-body police officers.”
Sky News - Hackers Claim They Stole 2011 Census Data
Daniel Hamilton, director of the civil liberties and privacy campaign group Big Brother Watch, said it was "profoundly concerning" if the group had accessed the 2011 Census.
"This comes, however, as no surprise to Big Brother Watch who have for months been warning the government about the risks of this information falling into the wrong hands," he said.
"The personal information of millions of members of the public may now be at risk.
"If these rumours are proved to be correct, it will demonstrate that each and every one of the promises made by the Office of the National Statistics about the safety and security of their databases were entirely bogus."
Daniel Hamilton, of privacy campaign group Big Brother Watch, said it was 'sad' the nursery had installed the equipment.
'With each person in the UK being caught on CCTV an average of 300 times a day, it now appears that even young children can't escape the surveillance state,' he said.
'Of course parents want their children to be safe, but monitoring their every movement goes a step too far.'
Blogs of the Week
The sage of the school playground, Welsh Assembly Member Joyce Watson, has decided the process of getting lunch at schools in Wales is far too simple and it therefore requires fingerprint technology in every school canteen around the country. Her justification stems from the potential for embarrassment for children from poorer backgrounds in Welsh schools.
Today saw yet another assault on the rights of smokers on the floor of the House of Commons.
Alex Cunningham, who is apparently the Member of Parliament for Stockton North, today moved the 'Smoking in Private Vehicles Bill' - a move to ban adults from smoking in their cars when children are present.
After a hacking group claimed earlier today that they have stolen the date from the 2011 Census, a 19-year-old believed to be a member of the group has been arrested in Essex. He has been named as Ryan Clearly and is currently in custody on suspicion of Computer Misuse Act and Fraud Act offences.
The Canadian Information Commissioner Ann Cavoukian has this week issues a warning to consumers about the risks associated with personal smart phones and other devices automatically collecting data on the user's location.
In a report published by her office, Cavoukian argues that privacy should be designed into these systems in order to avoid mobile operators and third parties building up vast logs of information about an individual's personal movemnents without their prior consent. At present, the majority of people are unaware of the privacy implications of much of the technology they carry around in their pocket.
A report by the European Parliament’s Civil Liberties Committee has called for businesses in the E.U. to make it more straightforward for customers to access and delete any data stored about them.
The report, released on Wednesday by chairman Juan Fernando López Aguilar, suggested that companies should consider the appointment of specific data protection officers to facilitate this.