Proposals made in the Communications Data Bill put forward by the government call for a closer monitoring of public internet activity. Internet providers will be responsible for retaining user’s personal data which can then be accessed by the police. This change, backed by Home Secretary Theresa May, aims to keep ahead of technology in an attempt to target serious criminals and detect terrorist activity. The bill was met by some criticism from Liberal Democrat Lord Marks, who claimed the bill was too intrusive. He also had qualms about the financial aspects, stating that data collection alone would cost over GBP9.3m, over four times as much as the original estimate.
As a consequence, UK households may have to pay an extra GBP49.70 each year to meet the demands of the government bill. Lord Marks says: “We cannot assume the shortfall would be found from the government, and the danger is the liability would fall on broadband subscribers.”
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