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Created Nov 4, 2015

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Letter to Emily Thornberry regarding the Draft Investigatory Powers Bill

Dear Emily Thornberry,

I write to you with a simple hypothetical. Imagine the ISP TalkTalk were required by law to retain 12 months worth of internet access history, now imagine the result of their recent security breach given this. Every TalkTalk customer would potentially have their entire private online world exposed to the public: from the popular teenager, terrified of the views of his family and friends, researching LGBTQ issues; to the jovial receptionist frequenting suicide support forums. None of it legally sensitive, but personally devastating.

TalkTalk are not alone: BT, Virgin and Sky have all had data breaches go public. As long as data security continues to be overlooked at these companies and many others, data breaches will continue to happen. The only way to safe guard the above information from attack, is to not have it at all.

If the proposed Draft Investigatory Powers Bill were to pass, the above would become an all too common reality. Nobody argues against the need for our security services to surveil those who wish us harm, but the proposal is too far a reach into the public's right to privacy.

As a computer network operator, I know the technology to only log the access history of specific targets exists, thus why I cannot understand how the decision to collect and store the information from everyone without warrant was reached. The technology to only monitor select individuals exist, why was a system based on this in conjunction with a judicial warrant overlooked?

Thus I implore you to join the campaign against the introduction of the Draft Investigatory Powers Bill and that you encourage others among your party to do so.

Yours sincerely,

James Cunningham

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