Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000/Part III/Media

< Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000‎ | Part III

Meidia coverage of Part III of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000.


2009-02-11 - Telegraph - Councils to be given power to snoop on calls and emails
Author: Tom Whitehead
Summary: Towns halls, along with police, security services and other public bodies will be able to view "communications" details of any one suspected of crime. But critics fear the move will simply pave the way for authorities to spy on millions of citizens and taxpayers. The power is contained in a new statutory order quietly laid before parliament yesterday.
2008-12-16 - ZDNet - Home Office to review DNA database, RIPA
Author: David Meyer
Summary: The Home Office will conduct a review of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act early next year, home secretary Jacqui Smith announced on Tuesday. Smith told members of Intellect, the UK IT-trade association, that the purpose of the review would be to bring RIPA powers "in line with tests of safeguards, openness, proportionality and common sense". Proposed revisions of RIPA could affect which public authorities can use the act's powers, and "[raise] the bar for how those powers are authorised, and who authorises their use".
2008-07-23 - Kable - Communications data requests top half million
Summary: Public authorities made 519,260 requests for communications data in 2007, an annualised increase of more than a half. The figure was published in the annual report of the interception of communications commissioner Sir Paul Kennedy. In the last nine months of 2006, he said that 253,557 requests for communications data were made of communication service providers, and last year's figure was 54% higher on an annualised basis.
2008-01-24 - OUT-LAW - RIPA could be challenged on human rights
Summary: The Government's new powers to force the handover of encryption keys could be vulnerable to a legal challenge under the Human Rights Act's guarantee to a fair trial. People who refuse keys or passwords face up to five years in jail. The Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA) was changed last autumn to allow police to force people to hand over passwords or keys to encrypted data. Refusal to do so is a criminal offence carrying a penalty of two years in jail, or up to five years if the issue concerns national security. One criminal law specialist has told technology law podcast OUT-LAW Radio that the law could be challenged under the Human Rights Act, though he also warned that such a challenge could fail under legal tests set out by the European Court of Justice (ECJ).
2007-11-14 - The Register - Animal rights activist hit with RIPA key decrypt demand
Author: John Leyden
Summary: Section Three of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA) came into force at the start in October 2007, seven years after the original legislation passed through parliament. Intended primarily to deal with terror suspects, it allows police to demand encryption keys or provide a clear text transcript of encrypted text. ... The contentious measure, introduced after years of consultation, was sold to Parliament as a necessary tool for law enforcement in the fight against organised crime and terrorism. But an animal rights activist is one of the first people at the receiving end of a notice to give up encryption keys. Her computer was seized by police in May, and she has been given 12 days to hand over a pass-phrase to unlock encrypted data held on the drive - or face the consequences.
2007-10-03 - The Register - UK police can now force you to reveal decryption keys
Summary: Users of encryption technology can no longer refuse to reveal keys to UK authorities after amendments to the powers of the state to intercept communications took effect on Monday (Oct 1). The Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA) has had a clause activated which allows a person to be compelled to reveal a decryption key. Refusal can earn someone a five-year jail term. Part III of RIPA was in the original Act but was not activated. The Home Office said last year that it had not implemented the provision because encryption had not been as popular as quickly as it had predicted. It launched a consultation which culminated in Part III being made active on 1st October. The measure has been criticised by civil liberties activists and security experts who say that the move erodes privacy and could lead a person to be forced to incriminate themselves.
2007-10-02 - The Enquirer - UK coppers empowered to demand your encryption keys
Author: Nick Farrell
Summary: All you data is now belong to the plod. FROM today it is a crime to refuse to decrypt data for coppers investigating a crime. Under part three, Section 49 of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA) if Inspector Knacker of the Yard knocks on your door and wants to have a snuffle on your hard drive and finds a blob of encrypted code he can make you decode it. If you refuse, and the copper is investigating acts of terrorism, you could be eating five years of porridge at her Majesty's Pleasure. If it just happens to be an ordinary crime that the copper is investigating you could be up for two years jailtime.
2007-10-01 - ars technica - UK can now demand data decryption on penalty of jail time
Author: Ken Fisher
Summary: New laws going into effect today in the United Kingdom make it a crime to refuse to decrypt almost any encrypted data requested by authorities as part of a criminal or terror investigation. Individuals who are believed to have the cryptographic keys necessary for such decryption will face up to 5 years in prison for failing to comply with police or military orders to hand over either the cryptographic keys, or the data in a decrypted form. Part 3, Section 49 of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA) includes provisions for the decryption requirements, which are applied differently based on the kind of investigation underway. As we reported last year, the five-year imprisonment penalty is reserved for cases involving anti-terrorism efforts. All other failures to comply can be met with a maximum two-year sentence.
2007-07-19 - PC Pro - Laptop searches "unconstitutionally invasive"
Author: Stewart Mitchell
Summary: If the police raided your home and demanded access to your hard drive they'd need a warrant, but beyond your four walls it's open season on your data. A recent US case in which Customs officials rifled through a teacher's laptop has highlighted that authorities have a different view of laptop data privacy than their citizens. "Our laptop computers contain vast amounts of personal information about our lives. You may do your banking on your computer or send email to your doctor about health concerns," says Electronic Freedom Frontier lawyer Lee Tien. "Travellers shouldn't be subjected to unconstitutionally invasive searches of their laptops and other electronic devices just because they're crossing the border." ... "The European Court of Human Rights has warned several times that member states should be 'particularly vigilant where the authorities are empowered to order and effect searches without a judicial warrant'. UK powers seem to fall short of this requirement if applied to searching laptops for information." The obvious solution for anyone worried about police officers rifling through their data is to encrypt files, but this could lead to more serious repercussions - even imprisonment. Politicians are keen to push through the controversial Part III of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA), which could demand data decryption. "There's currently no obligation to decrypt," says Richard Carter, resident security expert at Cambridge University. "There are provisions for this in RIPA, but they've never been brought into force, mainly because there were flaws that the City of London campaigned against."
2007-07-10 - Computing - Encryption key laws could soon be activated
Summary: Legislation to force the release of software encryption keys could be activated soon, according to new Home Secretary Jacqui Smith. The Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA) provides police and security services with the power to require the production of keys, with a maximum prison sentence of up to five years. The power was included in the legislation five years ago but has not yet been activated. In response to a question in the Commons from Conservative MP Sir Paul Beresford, Smith said a review is underway and a decision will be made soon. ‘I understand that we are looking at that specific matter to bring it forward,’ she said. Beresford said that paedophiles often encrypt material so the police cannot gain access to it. ‘The police have been waiting about five years for the statutory instrument relating to encryption and the RIPA act. When will they get it?’ he said.
2006-08-20 - zone-h - Getting Spied the European Way
Author: Massimo Cotrozzi
Summary: While the US are secretly undergoing eavesdropping activities over national and international communications (considered unconstitutional by a federal judge some days ago), including in depth analysis of financial transactions (all transactions, because "it's difficult to determine which ones are related to terrorism, just take the whole bunch and do it yourself), the UK police have asked the activation of Part 3 of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act provoking a big reactions from experts and associations, in an attempt to investigate upon a huge amount of computers that have been seized and lie waiting to be examined with their hard drive encrypted.....
2006-08-16 - ZDNet - RIPA could cause new wave of cyber attacks
Author: Steve Ranger
Summary: Security expert warns that malware could lead to mayhem through 'virus ate my password' claims or innocent users being targeted. The introduction of legislation to crack down on criminals using encryption to hide their tracks could also leave users open to new forms of electronic attacks, according to one expert.
2006-08-16 - IT Week - Ripa law may expose firms to blackmail
Author: James Murray
Summary: Proposed changes to the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (Ripa) giving police powers to make suspects produce "intelligible" copies of encrypted computer files could make firms vulnerable to new forms of electronic attacks, experts warned this week.
2006-08-16 - The Register - Ex-peer still seething over ID Cards and RIPA
Author: Mark Ballard
Summary: Andrew Phillips joined a debate at the Scrambling for Safety conference this week about outstanding elements of the controversial Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA), which amongst other things will give authorities the right to intercept electronic communications and decrypt encrypted data. RIPA was the first piece of legislation he saw when he joined the Lords in 1998, and he was still debating its loose ends in the weeks before he resigned his seat last month.
2006-08-15 - ZDNet - Why you should care about the RIP Act
Author: Graeme Wearden
Summary: With police officers poised to get the power to seize encryption keys, how will this affect you and your business?
2006-08-15 - ZDNet - Turning the tide against RIPA
Summary: Proper handling of encrypted evidence shouldn't mean throwing away the key. After six years on the shelf, the controversial Part III of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers (RIP) Act is about to be activated. This would make it illegal to fail to produce encryption keys on demand: should the suspect be unable to do so, they would have to prove that this is because they could not rather than they would not.
2006-08-15 - BBC - Police decryption powers 'flawed'
Summary: The government faces criticism over plans to give police powers to make suspects produce readable copies of encrypted computer evidence.
2006-08-15 - Slashdot - Backlash Against British Encryption Law
Summary: The BBC is reporting on some backlash against the British Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA) that came into force in 2000, which makes it a criminal act to refuse to decrypt files on a computer. Not surprisingly, the bugaboos of child p0rnography and terrorism, while unquestionably heinous, are being used to justify a law which does little to protect against either. Lord Phillips of Sudbury is quoted 'You do not secure the liberty of our country and value of our democracy by undermining them, that's the road to hell.
Note: Although the law was passed in 2000 it still has not come into force yet as it needs to be in acted by parliament.
2006-08-14 - The Register - Public debate on electronic snooping
Summary: Privacy campaigners have have called a public meeting to discuss laws drafted to give police access to peoples' encrypted data and communications records.
2006-06-15 - Spy Blog - RIPA news - more officials to be added to the list of authorised snoopers and Sir Charles Mantell appointed as a Surveillance Commissioner
Summary: This Monday 19th June, the House of Lords is set to rubber stamp a couple of Draft Statutory Instruments relating to the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000. The Draft Statutory Instruments adds about a dozen new types of official to the list people who are authorised to request Communications Traffic Data i.e. itemised phone bills, subscriber details, internet log files etc.
2006-06-12 - The Times - Punishing silence
Summary: Child s e x offenders should not be allowed to hide behind their computer. Punishing silence is a dangerous concept and should be rejected in all but severe cases. But the consultation paper circulated by the Home Office sets out the hurdles, designed to protect the innocent, which prosecutors would have to jump.
2006-06-09 - Spy Blog - RIPA Part III consultation
Author: wtwu
Summary: The Home Office has published, with as little fanfare as possible (paper published on Tuesday, press release only on Friday), the threatened public consultation on RIPA Part III - after a delay of over 6 years!
2006-06-08 - ZDNet - Government wants your view on encryption keys
Author: Tom Espiner
Summary: The Government has launched a public consultation into a draft code of practice for a controversial UK law that critics have said could alienate big business and IT professionals.
2006-05-23 - Computer Weekly - RIP revival could cause IT headaches
Author: Cliff Saran
Summary: The government has revived plans to give the police powers to demand encryption keys from individuals and businesses. Home office minister Liam Byrne told parliament that the Home Office intended to enforce measures in the Regulation of Investigatory Powers (RIP) Act that require disclosure.
2006-05-22 - IT Week - Legal changes may turn IT staff into criminals
Author: James Murray
Summary: Proposed changes to the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA) and Computer Misuse Act (CMA) could inadvertently criminalise many IT professionals, legal and security experts have warned. Aslo mentions
2006-05-22 - - Brit Spooks want your crypto keys
Author: Wil Harris
Summary: Consultation has begun on the introduction of a law that will allow the Police to force suspects to release the keys to decode encrypted communications. Part Three of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act allows suspects to be thrown in the clink for two years if they refuse to hand over keys that would allow the decryption of dodgy-looking communications.
2006-05-22 - RISK OS News - ROS app could scupper encryption law
Author: Chris Williams
Summary: Birmingham University's Dr Nat Queen said: "This attack on personal privacy can be defeated by programs that provide plausible deniability. I for one will never hand over encryption keys or encrypted data which I don't want anyone else to see."
2006-05-19 - Infoshop News - UK: Government to force handover of encryption keys
Author: Arch Stanton
Summary: Businesses and individuals may soon have to release their encryption keys to the police or face imprisonment, when Part 3 of the RIP Act comes into effect.
2006-05-19 - ZDNet UK - Anger over encryption key seizure threat
Author: Graeme Wearden
Summary: More then 600 people took part in a poll on ZDNet UK, which asked whether they supported the government's plans. Nearly 90 percent said they opposed the idea, with eight percent saying they were unconvinced and just two percent backing the government.
2006-05-19 - The Register - Government wants encryption key offence in force
Summary: The government plans to bring into force a controversial power that can require the disclosure of an encryption key on pain of five years' imprisonment. The power has lain dormant for six years; but its time has come, Home Office Minister Liam Byrne said.
2006-05-19 - Spy Blog - RIPA Part 3 - "UK Crypto wars" debate to resume?
Summary: We would advise anyone interested in strong Cryptography to lobby the Minister of State for Policing, Security and Community Safety and Members of Parliament before the Home Office publishes its Draft Code of Practice.There is every danger that the Home Office will seek to "publicly consult" only with "stakeholders" such as the vested interests of the Government , Police and Intelligence Agencies, and to pretend that their views are somehow balanced by the vested commercial interests of large Telecommunications and Internet Service Provider companies.
2006-05-18 - IT Week - Government gets tough on encryption
Author: Matt Chapman
Summary: The UK government is finally ready to pass the third section of the 2000 Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act, which will make it a crime not to disclose computer security keys if requested to do so by law enforcement agencies.
2006-05-18 - ars technica - UK wants power to demand encryption keys
Author: Peter Pollack
Summary: Note that much of the controversy surrounding Part 3 has to do with the fact that it doesn't force users to decrypt, but actually allows police to request the master key for encrypted files. Anyone who refuses to comply with the request can be imprisoned for up to two years. In a terrorism investigation, that penalty can be increased up to five years of jail time.
2006-05-18 - ZDNet UK - Government to force handover of encryption keys
Author: Tom Espiner
Summary: The UK Government is preparing to give the police the authority to force organisations and individuals to disclose encryption keys, a move which has outraged some security and civil rights experts.
2006-05-18 - Slashdot - UK Government Wants Private Encryption Keys
Summary: "Businesses and individuals in Britain may soon have to give their encryption keys to the police or face imprisonment. The UK government has said it will bring in the new powers to address a rise in the use of encryption by criminals and terrorists."
2003-11-06 - ZDNet UK - Parliament 'didn't understand RIP Act'
Author: Graeme Wearden
Summary: Peers have expressed their alarm about government attempts to widen the scope of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act, claiming the passing of the original law was 'a nightmare'
2001-04-04 - ZDNet UK - Government backtracks on encryption enquiry
Author: Wendy McAuliffe
Summary: Despite accepting its own taskforce recommendation two weeks ago, the Home Office now says there will be no independent enquiry into the effects of the controversial RIP Act
2000-10-24 - Guardian - The RIP Act
Author: Julian Glover and Patrick Barkham
Summary: What is the RIP Act? Why is it so controversial? What are the key areas of controversy? Will the act compromise e-commerce? What do other countries do?
2000-07-14 - Financial Times - RIP, R.I.P.
Summary: "....the best way of dealing with this misconceived piece of legislation would still be to scrap it....The danger is that the only criminals caught by the new RIP powers will be stupid and technologically illiterate...The RIP bill will make the UK the sole G8 economy to allow state access to decryption keys."
200-06-14 - vnunet - RIP Bill will 'cost UK economy £46 billion'
Author: Joe Devo
Summary: The government has been warned that it risks costing the UK economy £46 billion over the next five years unless it makes substantial changes to its Regulation of Investigatory Powers Bill.

See the FIPR RIP Information Centre for many more press stories back in 2000.