Wednesday, May 20, 2009
The Government has rejected claims that it is conducting too much surveillance on citizens and has said that it has got the balance between surveillance and liberty right. It has rejected many recommendations recently made by the House of Lords.
The House of Lords Select Committee on the Constitution issued a stinging rebuke to Government in February, claiming that over-surveillance was breaking the trust between Government and the people, and that intrusion into people’s privacy risked undermining democracy itself.
It said that judicial oversight of surveillance must be introduced, but the Government has rejected that proposal.
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The Government has issued a point-by-point response to the Lords’ claims and says that it does balance privacy on one hand and protection and effective service delivery on the other.
“The Government respects the privacy of its citizens,” said the Government Response to the Lords’ report. “We take the protection of their personal information extremely seriously and we are committed to handling it safely and securely.”
“It is essential that we all understand that the Government must strike a balance between the right of the public to their privacy, their right to the more effective delivery of public services and their right to protection from crime and terrorism. This Government will always take a principled and proportionate view of what needs to be done to protect the public and respect individual privacy, and will flex our approach where necessary,” it said.
This article was posted: Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 8:16 am