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British human rights activists sue security services after Snowden’s disclosures

June 25, 2013, 18:02 UTC+3
Documents made public by Edward Snowden point to the fact that GCHQ is conducting a secret program called Tempora
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LONDON, June 25. /ITAR-TASS reporter Alan Badov /. British organization human rights, Liberty, today filed a lawsuit against the country's security services. It demands an investigation into the legality of electronic surveillance, a denunciation of which appeared in a publication of former CIA officer Edward Snowden. This is the first lawsuit filed in the United Kingdom in connection with the data published by Snowden.

The request has been submitted to the Investigatory Powers Tribunal, which defines the legal framework of British law enforcement and intelligence agencies.

Documents sent by Edward Snowden to media point to the fact that the electronic intelligence service of the UK - Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) is conducting a secret program called Tempora.

GCHQ intercepts all telephone and internet signals passing through the fiber-optic cables on British soil. The information is being stored and then security forces conduct search through the database by keywords.

British law on the powers of the investigation requires electronic surveillance to be carried out in respect of certain subscribers with the approval of the Ministry of Internal Affairs or the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. However, one of the articles of the law allows intercepting electronic communications without specifying a particular user, if they are conducted with foreign countries. Meanwhile, if all the electronic traffic is being indiscriminately exposed to tracking, conversations between callers in the UK inevitably fall in the hands of the intelligence.

In addition, the British electronic intelligence receives data from the American program of electronic surveillance PRISM. It is implemented by the NSA/CSS, including with regard to British callers.

Liberty asks the Investigatory Powers Tribunal to determine whether British intelligence services have being using PRISM and Tempora to get round the British legal procedures regulating access to personal data, as stated the organization.

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