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Home Secretary: 'Surveillance powers needed to 'help police stay one step ahead of the criminals'

The Home Secretary says that new surveillance powers are needed to "help police stay one step ahead of the criminals" Credit: Reuters

Powers to monitor millions of emails, texts and website visits are needed to "help police stay one step ahead of the criminals", says the Home Secretary Theresa May.

In today's Sun newspaper, Mrs May insists: "I'm not willing to risk more terrorist plots succeeding and more paedophiles going free."

Home Sec: Email snooping could stop another Ian Huntley

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Lib Dem MP: Home Sec may be called to give evidence on surveillance reforms

The Lib Dem MP Julian Huppert, who is a member of the Home Affairs Committee has tweeted that the committee chairman Keith Vaz is considering calling the Home Secretary and head of the Office for security and counter-terrorism (OSCT) to give evidence about the proposed changes to surveillance laws.

Peer promises House of Lords scrutiny of surveillance reforms

The Liberal Democrat peer Matthew Oakeshott had this reaction to the Government's planned changes to surveillance laws:

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Home Office response to fears over email 'snooping'

The Home Office has tweeted a response to people voicing their disapproval of proposed changes to surveillance laws using the hashtag #telldaveeverything.

Yvette Cooper calls for safeguards on privacy

The Labour Shadow Home Secretary Yvette Cooper has called on the Government to release more details about its plans to change the law on intercepting communications. She said that "strong safeguards" were needed to protect privacy.

The Government needs to explain rapidly and in complete terms what they are planning, rather than partial briefings to the media. National security and personal privacy are too important to be left to rumours and rows...We need clear checks and balances on what the police, security services or the government are able to do, so that privacy and security are both protected and so that public confidence and trust in the system is upheld.

Information Commissioner will 'press for safeguards'

A spokesman for the Information Commissioner's Office said: "The Information Commissioner's role in this Home Office project, both under this government and the last, has been to press for the necessary limitations and safeguards to mitigate the impact on citizens' privacy.

"We will continue to seek assurances, including the implementation of the results of a thorough Privacy Impact Assessment (PIA).

"Ultimately, the decision as to whether to proceed with the project is one which has to be taken by Parliament."

Security minister: Emphasis on solving crime not 'snooping' on e-mails

Security minister James Brokenshire said the emphasis was on solving crime rather than "real-time snooping on everybody's emails".

He told BBC Radio 4's World at One programme: "We absolutely get the need for appropriate safeguards and for appropriate protections to be put in place around any changes that might come forward.

"What this is not is the previous government's plan of creating some sort of great big Big Brother database. That is precisely not what this is looking at."

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