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Liberal Democrats' 'digital bill of rights' proposes prison for data abusers

John E Dunn | April 15, 2015
Publishes 13-point list of 'rights' David Cameron might not like the look of

"The other parties definitely don't take this seriously, e.g. Labour's ID cards, Tories pushing for the Snooper's Charter," he added.

As for the need to replicate protections that might be in the GDPR, Huppert believed that something closer to home was still needed.

"To be honest, I think it [the GDPR] may fall apart, because it tries to do too many things that aim in different directions."

One obvious area of difference is encryption, which David Cameron has dropped vague hints that he'd like to control in unspecified ways, something that is anathema to the LibDem proposals. On the other side, the document accepts that encrypted data can be unscrambled but says "no request should be made to decrypt content unless it is necessary and proportionate to do so for purpose of protecting the public.

"Decryption should only take place on a case-by-case basis, and companies should not be expected to hand over to Government the encryption master-keys," states the document.

Strip away some of the feelgood language and this is pretty similar to the current system. What matters is that people understand the law and their rights when using the technology.

"Our Digital Bill of Rights will finally enshrine into law our rights as citizens of this country to privacy, to stop information about our lives being misused, and to protect our right to freedom of speech," said Deputy Prime Minister and Liberal Democrat leader, Nick Clegg.

"The way in which we work, socialise, buy products and use services has changed at lightning speed since the digital revolution.

"However, government and politicians have responded at snail's pace, with a poor understanding of new technology and the impact it is having on our lives. We need to ensure that consumers, businesses, journalists and our children are protected in the online world.

Feedback and contributions from the public are welcomed by emailing digitalrightsbill@libdems.org.uk, the Party said.

 

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