Frightening implications for everyone.
The King's Speech contained a chilling hidden message in it. Whilst the mainstream media focused on irrelevant and hollow promises, buried in the speech was a plan that will have frightening implications for every single one of us.
Plans to reform the Investigatory Powers Act past most people by. Not so Silky Carlo of Big Brother Watch who revealed the truth behind the weasel words.
Responding to plans to reform the Investigatory Powers Act, Silkie Carlo, director for Big Brother Watch said:
“The King’s Speech revealed plans to add yet more spying powers to the Snoopers’ Charter. The government says it will give them the power to veto private tech companies’ privacy and security features. Such powers would be more extreme than even the world’s most despotic regimes."
This would be yet another Bill that would exert extraordinary control to treat private companies as extensions of the state in order to conduct mass surveillance of millions of law-abiding citizens. It would be a major blow to the population’s security.”
In simple terms the Government will demand that tech companies give them free access to monitor all your correspondence, Whatsapp, Facebook Messenger, Telegram, Google mail, Zoom, MS Teams, to name but a few. End to End encryption will be a thing of the past. everything will be scanned, read and documented. Nothing will be safe from the Government's prying eyes.
It gets worse, the UK Government are also ramping-up monitoring of bank accounts as well. The first section of the public to be targeted are those who receiving Universal Credit but this is expected to be extended to other sections of the population before eventually becoming mandatory for all.
Currently the reason given for constant monitoring of claimants bank accounts is to 'prevent fraud' but expect other 'reasons' to be given for needing to have access to you bank account for 'monitoring' the big one is likely to be to 'help' you manage your carbon credit, but also expect 'terrorism' and 'hostile foreign nations' to also be given as justification.
Responding to plans to introduce new welfare surveillance powers, Silkie Carlo, director for Big Brother Watch said:
“Everyone wants fraudulent uses of public money to be dealt with, whether it’s the billions in COVID contracts fraud or welfare fraud, and the government already has powers to review the bank statements of suspects. However, the government should not intrude on the privacy of anyone’s bank account in this country without very good reason, whether a person is receiving benefits or not. People who are disabled, sick, carers or looking for work should not be treated like criminals by default. Such proposals do away with the longstanding democratic principle in Britain that state surveillance should follow suspicion rather than vice versa and it would be dangerous for everyone if the government reverses this presumption of innocence. Information processing in the welfare system is notoriously bad and the state rifling through millions of people’s bank statements is highly likely to result in serious mistakes. As the government is overseeing a cost of living crisis it should be investing public money to help people out of poverty, not to spy on them.”
You can find more information regarding welfare surveillance in our report: Poverty Panopticon: The Hidden Algorithms Shaping Britain’s Welfare State (published in July 2021)