Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Our data is not safe

I finally read the Government's "Vision Statement" for information sharing, and what an utterly horrible document it is too. Under the apparent guise of the necessity to share infromation, it outlines how the Government intends to breach the Data Protection Act to help them pinpoint social exclusion. What that actually means is identifying those it wishes to intefere with so it can socially engineer them along what it decides is the virtuous path.

What's worse though is the section titled "Exploring greater infromation sharing with the private sector". Not only do they want to further intefere in the lives of those it considers require interference, but they want to extend the information sharing policy out into the private sector. The Government already excuses itself for potentially failing to protect our data and now it wants the right to just give it away?

All of this is being done in the supposed name of necessity to protect us and fight crime. But as William Pitt the Younger said, "Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom. It is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves".

Hat Tip: Croydonian for the Pitt quote


Martine Martin said...

Ugh! What an odious piece of crap that document is (I have the urge to shower).

So basically they want to give our information away to the Private Sector then, in the name of fighting crime. Add that to Gordon Brown's idea to pay for ID Cards by selling the data on them to High Street stores and businesses, and things just keeping getting more and more sinister.

Anonymous said...

Good quote - the debate on Fox's motion to bring in his East India Bill, November 18 1783, I believe! You can find the debate here. This was only about a month before Pitt and the King colluded to throw the Fox government out, George III telling the Lords that whoever voted for the bill would be considered his enemy - very liberal!

Pitt was a great rhetorician. Of course, he did go on, like most long-serving PMs (others spring to mind) to prove himself to be somewhat of a hypocrite: he abandoned the cause of parliamentary reform, and enacted some of the most repressive legislation this country has ever seen during the revolutionary wars. He also brought in the income tax! All this makes me think that he's an odd Tory idol - Disraeli seems a much better pin up.

Still, sadly Pitt's quote is entirely apt when applied to this government. They get away with the "necessity" argument far too often, and not enough people are willing to challenge them. Most of the time, this crap is going on with most of us totally unaware. I hadn't even heard of this vision statement... rather concerning as I run a website that's meant to be highlighting civil liberties abuses!