GCHQ are plunging into the privacy debate.

Writing in Tuesday’s Financial Times, the new director of GCHQ Robert Hannigan, called for “greater co-operation from technology companies” to stop terrorists and criminals groups using online services as their “command-and-control networks of choice”.

His words completely ignored the Snowden revelations that showed the immense surveillance powers and access to our data that GCHQ has. Instead of talking about GCHQ’s apparent habit of collecting the entire British population’s data rather than targeting their activities at criminals, he thought he would try to frame the debate as about GCHQ needing more help from technology companies.

David Cameron has come out in support of Hannigan’s comments. Hannigan’s statement is the latest in a concerted campaign by the Government and the intelligence agencies to bolster support for their surveillance powers.

Even Nick Clegg, the leader of the Liberal Democrats – who traditionally have a good stance on digital rights issues – said he supports blanket collection of data.

And Theresa May and the Home Office are so obsessed with surveillance, they want to scupper the Department for Culture, Media and Sport’s plans to let us use our mobile phones on every mobile network; a plan that would increase connectivity and support the UK economy.

This is a big debate. And if we value our privacy from Government surveillance, we’re going to have to fight for it.

That’s why ORG’s spent the last two days pushing back against Hannigan’s comments in the media.

We’ve appeared on BBC TV news and Radio 4 and been quoted in the Daily Mail, The Telegraph and The Guardian. We also wrote a comment piece in the Independent.

Can you help us with the fight by giving us £5 a month?

ORG is playing a huge part in fighting for our privacy by making sure that GCHQ and the Government don’t get to push through more surveillance powers unopposed.

We’re already holding the Government to account in the courts by taking them to the European Court of Human Rights to challenge GCHQ’s practices and oversight and intervening in a case on DRIP – an Act forcing ISPs to retain our email and web data that Parliament rushed through earlier this year.

We’ll also be trying to force privacy and digital rights onto the agenda of new MPs at next year’s election. We’ll hold lots of local debates with Parliamentary candidates in the run-up to polling day in May. And we’ve got plans for helping ORG supporters to challenge candidates that knock on their door.

But Theresa May and David Cameron will be running their election campaign from precisely the opposite angle. That’s why it’s so crucial ORG has the resources we need to stand up to them.

Join ORG today so we can keep fighting back against GCHQ’s invasion of our privacy.

When you join ORG you’ll get a free ticket to our annual conference ORGCon on 15 and 16 November in London. We’ve got fantastic speakers and we’re focusing on surveillance including a talk on what big technology companies are doing about mass surveillance.