Ten human rights groups warn Theresa May of ‘abuse’ of social media censorship powers

Ten human rights groups have warned today that hasty measures to limit access to social networks and communications could lead to abuse. Their letter to Home Secretary Theresa May says:

“We are very concerned that new measures, made in good faith but in a heated political environment, will overextend powers in ways that would be susceptible to abuse, restrict legitimate, free communication and expression and undermine people’s privacy.  This is especially so if proposals involve unaccountable voluntary arrangements between law enforcement and communications providers.”

The signatories also ask for a meeting with Theresa May, in addition to the meeting she is having today with service providers.

Jim Killock of the Open Rights Group, said:

“Blocking people’s communications could do more harm than good. People may be put in danger and efforts to stop rioting and damage might well be disrupted. Powers targeting individuals could easily lead to abuse. Theresa May needs to meet with rights groups and have a frank discussion about where these ideas may be leading us.”