Vodafone is calling for government agencies to have to gain warrants to carry out any surveillance, as it released a report that phone tapping is used by governments to snoop on their citizens.
Stephen Deadman, Vodafone's group privacy officer, told The Guardian:
We are making a call to end direct access as a means of government agencies obtaining people's communication data.
Without an official warrant, there is no external visibility. If we receive a demand we can push back against the agency.
The fact that a government has to issue a piece of paper is an important constraint on how powers are used.
...We need to debate how we are balancing the needs of law enforcement with the fundamental rights and freedoms of the citizens.
He said the use of direct-access pipes in the UK would be illegal because agencies have to obtain a warrant to get information.
More top news
Pretenders singer Chrissie Hynde has been criticised for comments she has made about rape victims.
The Clipper Round The World Yacht Race is due to begin in London today from St Katherine's Dock.
Once a year W11 comes alive with the colour of carnival. Everything you need to know about getting around and what to see in Notting Hill.