According to the government, in a bid to fight against terrorism and other crimes, swift access to communications data is required through the use of latest technological innovations. The UK plans to install ‘probes’ along the communications network in a bid to log everything from web surfing data to Skype calls.
The reason for having such ‘probes’ is that social networking services such as Facebook, twitter; video calling / messaging services like Yahoo!, Skype, etc. are located overseas and that they might not be obliged to fulfill the requests of the UK government. This is where the committee said that such surveillance devices and techniques would come in handy.
The report reads, “It is important for the agencies that there is some means of accessing communications data from uncooperative overseas communications service providers.”
The authorities have stressed that the ‘spying’ wouldn’t involve complete access to data being sent across the communication lines but, will only involve access to data such as who is contacting whom and how is the communication done. The report states that ‘deep packet inspection’ techniques will be utilized to spy on the communications; however, no specific services that may be targeted were named in the report.