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Protecting the public in a changing communications environment - consultation and response

In April 2009, we published a consultation called ‘Protecting the public in a changing communications environment’. It looked at the importance of communications data in helping to protect and safeguard the public. Communications data is information about a communication, but does not include the content of a communication.

Our consultation examined how the rapidly changing communications environment means the existing capability of the police, the security and intelligence agencies and other public authorities is declining, and why change is necessary. It asked for your views on options for maintaining our vital communications data capabilities. We received 221 responses, and this document is a summary of those responses.

The responses found that the rejection of a central database for all communications data was welcomed. There was also recognition of the importance of communications data and agreement that the capability of communications data to protect the public should be maintained.

As the proposals in the consultation paper are developed in the light of the responses received, we will continue to work closely with communications service providers in order to minimise as far as possible any impact on them. We will also make sure any new proposals will include strong safeguards to minimise the potential for abuse and to ensure the security and integrity of the data.

The consultation and summary of responses are available below.

Date: Fri Nov 06 10:07:31 GMT 2009

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