Next #ORGcon session: Ailidh Callander of @privacyint and Rachel Logan of @AmnestyUK: "Is the law the best way to fight mass surveillance?"
Ailidh starts by running us through some of the cases civil society has taken against the UK govt since the @Snowden revelations, > #ORGcon
< including the case 10 human rights organisations are taking against the UK at the European Court of Human Rights on Tuesday #ORGcon
In 2013, immediately after Snowden revelations, PI, AIUK and 8 other orgs challenged UK surveillance practices. Investigatory > #ORGcon
< Powers Tribunal ruled in 2014 that it's lawful—even w "thematic warrants", allowing hack of all mobile phones in a given city #ORGcon
On Tuesday in Strasbourg, ECtHR will review the issue of mass surveillance of digital comms (10 orgs suing, incl @OpenRightsGroup) #ORGcon
The appropriate section of Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act does not meet the minimum standards ECtHR has previously required #ORGcon
Developments in technology mean there is no longer a meaningful distinction between comms internal and external to a jurisdiction #ORGcon
That *all* our comms are monitored, even if not eventually read by GCHQ, is itself a violation of our Right to Privacy #ORGcon
Courts have ruled things illegal before—the secret Investigatory Powers Tribunal did rule UK powers revealed by Snowden illegal > #ORGcon
< so the UK government pushed through a new Investigatory Powers Act, to legitimate the hacking and snooping GCHQ was already doing #ORGcon
We also need to be vigilant — blanket exemptions for intelligence services show up in the new Data Protection Bill for example #ORGcon
(Good to see an all-female panel and actively soliciting female questions—it's a very white, male room, unsurprisingly) #ORGcon
Non-judicial legislative change is pticly difficult. Parliamentarians are reluctant to challenge intelligence agencies—pticly > #ORGcon
< because any MP would be blamed in the press for any subsequent terrorist attack #ORGcon
And that's without difficulty of explaining these issues to politicians, who are def no more technically aware than average users #ORGcon
Issue with UK litigation: British courts can't strike down laws. EU Charter of Fundamental Rights does; need to keep that w Brexit #ORGcon
From audience @Nesient asks about risk to winning these cases—European courts were a pretext for Brexit. Politicians blame "Europe > #Brexit
< telling us what to do", but then British judges are declared "enemies of the people". Reality is politicians just don't like > #Brexit
< being told what to do. Human rights cases are important protection against bad laws. #Brexit #ORGcon
Audience member asks how we can verify agencies do actually comply with result of any case. Transparency is hard w national security #ORGcon
Audience member asks about cases against foreign intelligence agencies in UK—Menwith Hill in N Yorks is owned by @NSAGov for example #ORGcon
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