Party like it's 1998: UK government bans ripping CDs -- again


In 2014, Britain strode boldly into the late 20th century, finally legalising "private copying" -- ripping CDs, taping LPs, recording TV shows, backing up your ebooks and games -- but now it's thought better of the move. Read the rest

Devastating technical rebuttal to the Snoopers Charter


The Snoopers Charter is the UK Tory government's proposal to force ISPs to retain records of all their customers' online activities, and the government has used the excuse of the Paris attacks to call for its immediate passage despite the fact that the £175m/year the government has budgeted to defray ISPs' costs is not even close to enough to pay for the massive surveillance effort, meaning that Britons' ISP bills are set to soar if it passes. Read the rest

England: You have four days to reply to the secret consultation on the NHS's future


The English NHS is at the very end of a key consultation on the future of its "mandate" -- which sets out its goals and budgets -- and though the public has been able to comment since October, the NHS hasn't bothered to tell anyone about it. Read the rest

Private funding of public services is bankrupting the UK


The right-wing Telegraph can't deny what critics have been saying since the Tony Blair years: when you use private to fund public services, the only people who benefit are the shareholders. Read the rest

David Cameron capitulates to terror, proposes Britain's USA Patriot Act


The UK Prime Minister has seized on the tragic deaths and injuries in Paris as an excuse to terroise Britons into allowing him to pass his Snoopers Charter, a sweeping, badly written surveillance bill that will end security research in the UK, cause Internet bills to soar, and riddle critical software with back-doors, threatening anyone who reveals these vulnerabilities, even in court, with a year in prison. Read the rest

Britons' Internet access bills will soar to pay for Snoopers Charter


The UK government has budgeted £175m/year to bribe ISPs to magically divide their customers' "data" and "metadata" and store a year's worth of the latter. This isn't even close to the real cost of creating and maintaining the massive storehouses of highly sensitive data on every Briton, and so ISPs are warning government and the public to expect much higher broadband rates in the future in order to recoup the cost of mass surveillance. Read the rest

UK Snooper's Charter "would put an invisible landmine under every security researcher"

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Respected UK tech elder statesman and journalist Rupert Goodwins blasts the UK government's plan to impose secret gag-orders on researchers who discover government-inserted security flaws in widely used products, with prison sentences of up to a year for blowing the whistle or even mentioning the gag orders in a court of law. Read the rest

UK law will allow secret backdoor orders for software, imprison you for disclosing them


Under the UK's new Snoopers Charter (AKA the Investigatory Powers Bill), the Secretary of State will be able to order companies to introduce security vulnerabilities into their software ("backdoors") and then bind those companies over to perpetual secrecy on the matter, with punishments of up to a year in prison for speaking out, even in court. Read the rest

Here's the kind of data the UK government will have about you, in realtime


UK Home Secretary Theresa May has announced legislation that will force ISPs to preserve the records of all of your online interactions and give them up to practically anyone in government, with little to no judicial oversight. Read the rest

A Freedom of Information request for UK Home Secretary Theresa May's metadata


When UK Home Secretary Theresa May introduced the new, sweeping UK spying bill this week, she reiterated her claim that metadata is like an "itemised phone bill" and does not contain anything harmful. Read the rest

British government will (unsuccessfully) ban end-to-end encryption

Home Secretary Theresa May has introduced the long-awaited, frequently assayed Snoopers' Charter, and it is a complete disaster.

Petition: Rename Stephen Harper to "Calgary International Airport"


1,492 supporters and rising on "It would be Harper’s style — he’s not a show-off, he’s not about selfies, and being named after a popular airport would certainly help him rehabilitate his image after such a disastrous campaign." (via Making Light) Read the rest

UK police & spies will have warrantless access to your browsing history


A new plan from Tory Home Secretary/Sith Lord Theresa May will require ISPs to retain one year's worth of Britons' online activity, and hand it over to the police and security services on demand, without a warrant. Read the rest

Christ, what an asshole.


Chris Grayling, UK Tory MP and leader of the House of Commons: The Freedom of Information act isn't for journalism, it's for "those who want to understand why and how government is taking decisions." If you want to hold your government accountable, you, personally, should do it, without any help from the press. It will make Britain great again. Read the rest

UK govt: no crypto back doors, just repeal the laws of mathematics


The UK government continues to exhibit its historic, dangerous cluelessness about crypto. After promising to ban working crypto in the previous election campaign, the Tory government has advanced a nonsensical compromise: apps can use working crypto, but also have to be able to break that crypto on demand, without using backdoors. Read the rest

David Cameron promises law to force ISPs to censor a secret blacklist


The UK Prime Minister has doubled down on his Great Firewall of Cameron, which is an arrangement whereby the UK ISPs "voluntarily" agreed to block websites that had been secretly ruled to be pornographic, unless customers specifically asked them not tp. Read the rest

Canada's new Liberal majority: better than the Tories, still terrible for the Internet


Justin Trudeau is certainly an improvement on outgoing Prime Minister Stephen Harper. He's unlikely to go on burning Canada's archives and warring on its scientists, and he'll probably stop ignoring the murder of hundreds of aboriginal women and girls, and he's not a racist asshole who plays to other racist assholes to keep power. Read the rest

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