Thursday, January 08, 2009

MI5: Internet Phone Services a Risk to National Security

Leo King writes on Computerworld UK:

Internet telephone services pose a serious threat to Britain’s security, the head of MI5 has said.

The danger with online calls, said spy chief Jonathan Evans, was that they do not result in telephone bills, which are key evidence documents in prosecutions. This meant it would be much easier for terrorists to make the calls and eventually escape prosecution if they are tried for criminal offences.

In an interview with the media yesterday, Evans, director general at MI5 since 2007, said online phone calls posed a “significant detriment to national security” by enabling terrorists to communicate with less risk.

Evans lent his support to the government’s planned database of every phone call, internet use and email in the UK, saying that it was important the security agencies could access this information.

"If we are to maintain our capability we are going to have to make decisions [on powers to intercept communications] in the next few years," he was reported as saying, in the Daily Telegraph. "Because traditional ways are unlikely to work."

More here.


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