ORG responds to the Joint Committee report into Investigatory Powers Bill

The Joint Committee has published its report into the draft Investigatory Powers Bill. Throughout the report, the Committee calls on the Home Office to clarify its case for powers and the terms and definitions contained in the Bill – including more clarity around Internet Connection Records, further justification for bulk powers and an operational case for the use of Bulk Personal Datasets.

Executive Director Jim Killock said:

“This is the third report that criticises the Investigatory Powers Bill, showing a troubling lack of clarity and evidence for the powers that are being demanded. Theresa May can no longer claim that this is a ‘clear and comprehensible’ piece of legislation.

The Home Office needs to address the recommendations of all three reports and undertake a major re-write of the Bill before it is laid before Parliament.”

The Joint Committee was published two days after the Intelligence and Security Committee’s report, which said that the draft Bill, “appears to have suffered from a lack of sufficient time and preparation” and called for an entirely new section dedicated to privacy protections.

 The Science and Technology Committee have also issued a report saying that the lack of clarity around the powers and their definitions could put the UK tech sector at risk.