FC: U.K. proposal would let government ban anonymous remailers

From: Declan McCullagh (declanat_private)
Date: Thu Nov 15 2001 - 12:35:36 PST

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    "U.K. may order firms to record Net-traffic, ban anon remaiers?"
    From: "Alan Docherty" <alanat_private>
    To: <declanat_private>
    Subject: RE: U.K. may order firms to record Net-traffic, ban anon remaiers?
    Date: Thu, 15 Nov 2001 06:53:12 -0000
    The Anti-terrorism, Crime and Security Bill was introduced to Parliament on
    Monday and the legislation will go before the House of Commons next week for
    its second reading and committee stages.
    The Bill is expected to become law before Christmas.
    Alan Docherty
    Internet Freedom News
    From: "Caspar Bowden" <cbat_private>
    To: <declanat_private>, <politechat_private>
    Subject: RE: U.K. may order firms to record Net-traffic, ban anon remaiers?
    Date: Thu, 15 Nov 2001 20:29:40 -0000
     > [mailto:owner-politechat_private] On Behalf Of Declan McCullagh
     > Sent: 15 November 2001 05:38
     > Subject: FC: U.K. may order firms to record Net-traffic, ban
     > anon remaiers?
     > If I may, permit me to pose a question to the U.K. lawyers on
     > this list:
     > Does this give the Secretary of State the power to ban
     > anonymous remailers operating inside the U.K.?
    Not as such
     > (Or, more precisely, limit their utility by
     > requiring record-keeping, identity escrow.)
    Yes exactly (but not a lawyer BTW).
    It's in interaction of ATCS Bill Clause 102 and RIP Act 200 S.2.1 (full
    monty appended)
    It doesn't require identity escrow per se, but it can instruct all or
    particular ISPs to retain arbitrary "communications data", as defined by
    RIP S.21, which includes "traffic data" as a subcategory.
    The definitions can be argued until they make no sense at all
    (http://www.hmso.gov.uk/acts/acts2000/00023--c.htm#21), so it would be
    interesting to try and think of a remailer than eluded the definition of
    "communications data".
     > I'm not saying, of course, that
     > the secretary would choose to exercise that authority
    Heaven forfend
     > -- at least not right
     > away. The question is whether that authority would exist.
    It would, and an option to renew every two years.
     > Seems to me that
     > "communications providers" may be defined broadly enough for
     > that to be the case.
    The really bad news is that it's not just ISPs - you don't have to be
    providing a "telecommunications service" to the public, you just have to
    be providing it at all to anyone - even in a private contract or
    informal arrangement.
    If you a peer in a peer-to-peer network you can be ordered to log.
    It's Fink-o-matic ! New this Xmas.
    Caspar Bowden                           www.fipr.org
    Director, Foundation for Information Policy Research
    Tel: +44(0)20 7354 2333
    "105 Interpretation of Part 11
    (1) In this Part—
    "communications data" has the same meaning as in Chapter 2 of Part 1 of
    the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 (c. 23);
    "communications provider" means a person who provides a postal service
    or a telecommunications service;
    "legal proceedings", "postal service" and "telecommunications service"
    each has the same meaning as in that Act..."
    "102 Directions about retention of communications data
    (1) If, after reviewing the operation of any requirements contained in
    the code of practice and any agreements under section 101, it appears to
    the Secretary of State that it is necessary to do so, he may by order
    made by statutory instrument authorise the giving of directions under
    this section.
    (2) Where any order under this section is in force, the Secretary of
    State may give such directions as he considers appropriate about the
    retention of communications data—
    (a) to communications providers generally;
    (b) to communications providers of a description specified in the
    (c) to any particular communications providers or provider.
    (3) An order under this section must specify the maximum period for
    which a communications provider may be required to retain communications
    data by any direction given under this section while the order is in
    (4) Before giving a direction under this section the Secretary of State
    shall consult—
    (a) with the communications provider or providers to whom it will apply;
    (b) except in the case of a direction confined to a particular provider,
    with the persons appearing to the Secretary of State to represent the
    providers to whom it will apply.
    (5) A direction under this section must be given or published in such
    manner as the Secretary of State considers appropriate for bringing it
    to the attention of the communications providers or provider to whom it
    (6) It shall be the duty of a communications provider to comply with any
    direction under this section that applies to him.
    (7) The duty imposed by subsection (6) shall be enforceable by civil
    proceedings by the Secretary of State for an injunction, or for specific
    performance of a statutory duty under section 45 of the Court of Session
    Act 1988 (c. 36), or for any other appropriate relief.
    (8) The Secretary of State shall not make an order under this section
    unless a draft of it has been laid before Parliament and approved by a
    resolution of each House."
    RIP Act 2000 S.2
    "telecommunications service" means any service that consists in the
    provision of access to, and of facilities for making use of, any
    telecommunication system (whether or not one provided by the person
    providing the service); and
    "telecommunication system" means any system (including the apparatus
    comprised in it) which exists (whether wholly or partly in the United
    Kingdom or elsewhere) for the purpose of facilitating the transmission
    of communications by any means involving the use of electrical or
    electro-magnetic energy.
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