May 10, 2012 | Jim Killock

Can you help stop the Snoopers' Charter?

The “Snoopers’ Charter”: the Communications Data Bill is about to be published by the government.

The “Snoopers’ Charter”: the Communications Data Bill is about to be published by the government. When the coalition was elected, they promised that:

“We will end the storage of internet and email records without good reason”

Nick Clegg added:

"We won't hold your internet and email records when there is just no reason to do so."

Now, the government is saying that companies like Facebook and Google must keep your email and messaging records for 12 months, whether or not you are under suspicion: and that the records (not the content) must be handed over on the say-so of a police officer.

The government are asking for powers to intercept and collect information about who you talk to online by snooping on your Internet traffic, in case companies based outside the UK don’t agree to hand over your information.

That makes us all a suspect. Instead of being under surveillance when there is evidence of wrongdoing, you will be under suspicion by default.

The government says this is nothing new. That is true: they pushed European “Data Retention” laws that are being rejected in many EU countries and challenged in the European Court of Justice as an abuse of our privacy rights.

What you can do now

1 You can write to your MP

We are asking people to write to them personally: you can use this tool here:

Can you visit your MP? Would you like training near where you live? Email straight back and we will help

2 Join ORG

We have been working on these plans for four years, and helped break the story this March. We've worked to make sure the Lib Dems are officially opposed, and are now organising the biggest lobby of Parliament for digital rights yet seen. Joining ORG works: we are dedicated to preserving your online rights.

We need to stop these plans: and we can, with your help. There is massive public opposition, and right now, plenty we can do to persuade MPs that they are taking a wrong turning.