Data retention and national law: the ECJ ruling in Joined Cases C-203/15 and C-698/15 Tele2 and Watson (Grand Chamber)

27 12 2016

tele2The 21 December 2016 judgment in these important cases concerns the acceptability from a human rights perspective of national data retention legislation maintained even after the striking down of the Data Retention Directive in Digital Rights Ireland (Case C-293/12 and 594/12) (“DRI”) for being a disproportionate interference with the rights contained in Articles 7 and 8 EU Charter of Fundamental Rights (EUCFR).  Read the rest of this entry »





How the UK passed the most invasive surveillance law in democratic history – Paul Bernal

25 11 2016

image-20161123-19696-167r7twYou might not have noticed thanks to world events, but the UK parliament recently approved the government’s so-called Snooper’s Charter and it will soon become law. This nickname for the Investigatory Powers Bill is well earned. Read the rest of this entry »





Case Law: Privacy International v Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs: Collection of bulk personal datasets was unlawful – Sophie Stalla-Bourdillon

26 10 2016

gchqOn 17 October 2016, the investigatory Powers Tribunal (IPT) delivered its judgment in the case Privacy International v. Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs et al. The skeleton arguments for the claimants and respondents can be accessed here. Read the rest of this entry »





How would Brexit affect data protection, privacy and surveillance laws in Britain? – Steve Peers

11 05 2016

image-20160504-5832-11yu217Successive British governments have passed or tried to pass laws granting wide data sharing and surveillance powers, only for them to founder in the European courts due to conflicts with European directives and laws such as the European Charter of Fundamental Rights. Read the rest of this entry »





A very brief history of interception in Britain – Bernard Keenan

21 02 2016

gchq1Britain is in the process of legislating a new system of control over the interception of communication. The Investigatory Powers Bill, currently being debated in draft form, aims to give an unprecedented level of transparency and accountability to the use of government surveillance powers. In this ‘long read’ piece Bernard Keenan provides some historical context on the issue of interception, arguing that the more the law oversees secret activities, the more secretive the law becomes. Read the rest of this entry »





Some things old, some things new: A clause-by-clause review of the Draft Investigatory Powers Bill – Investigatory Powers Research Group

27 12 2015

gchq1Soon after the publication of the Draft Investigatory Powers Bill in November, a number of privacy, surveillance and freedom of expression specialist academics and practitioners gathered at the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies to discuss the detail and the main issues. Read the rest of this entry »





Case Law, Strasbourg: Zakharov v Russia, Grand Chamber re-affirms case law on state surveillance – Lorna Woods

16 12 2015

Lubyanka_BuildingOn 4 December 2015, the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights (“ECtHR”) handed down judgment in the case of Roman Zakharov v Russia ([2015] ECHR 1065). Read the rest of this entry »





Finding Proportionality in Surveillance Laws – Andrew Murray

12 12 2015

mi5The United Kingdom Parliament is currently in the pre-legislative scrutiny phase of a new Investigatory Powers Bill, which aims to “consolidate existing legislation and ensure the powers in the Bill are fit for the digital age”. It is fair to sat this Bill is controversial with strong views being expressed by both critics and supporters of the Bill. Against this backdrop it is important to cut through the rhetoric and get to the heart of the Bill and to examine what it will do and what it will mean in terms of the legal framework for British citizens, and indeed for those overseas. Read the rest of this entry »





Investigatory Powers bill will remove ISPs’ right to protect your privacy – Eerke Boiten

8 11 2015

BanksyFollowing months of uncertainty and a few weeks of intense speculation and spin, the UK government has published its draft Investigatory Powers bill, a piece of legislation incorporating sweeping surveillance powers frequently described and derided as a “snooper’s charter”. Read the rest of this entry »





Summer Round Up: Research and Resources – 3 September 2015

3 09 2015

Resource RoundupThe past month has produced a rich crop of articles and blog posts on media and legal issues which may be of interest to readers of Inforrm.   We will deal with these under five headings: Interception and Surveillance, Lachaux and Serious Harm, Articles on the Right to be Forgotten, Articles on Defamation and Free Speech and Articles on Privacy and Data Protection. Read the rest of this entry »