Sweeping spy bill now becomes law
In Britain, Big Brother just got bigger.
After months of wrangling, Parliament has passed a contentious new snooping law that gives authorities — from police and spies to food regulators, fire officials and tax inspectors — powers to look at the internet browsing records of everyone in the country.
The law requires telecoms companies to keep records of all users’ web activity for a year, creating databases of personal information that the firms worry could be vulnerable to leaks and hackers.
Civil liberties groups say the law establishes mass surveillance of British citizens, following innocent internet users from the office to the living room.
Tim Berners-Lee, the computer scientist credited with inventing World Wide Web, tweeted news of the law’s passage with the words: “Dark, dark days.”
The Investigatory Powers Bill — dubbed the “snoopers’ charter” by critics — was passed by Parliament this month.