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Investigatory Powers Bill - Committee (3rd Day)

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 3:30 pm on 19th July 2016.

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Photo of Lord Paddick Lord Paddick Liberal Democrat Lords Spokesperson (Home Affairs) 3:30 pm, 19th July 2016

My Lords, I shall speak to Amendment 116 in my name and that of my noble friend Lady Hamwee. We also have our names to Amendments 154 and 235 in this group.

These amendments relate to a government commitment not to require telecommunications operators to retain third-party data. On 4 November 2015 in a Statement in the other place, the then Home Secretary said that the Bill,

“will not include powers to force UK companies to capture and retain third party internet traffic from companies based overseas”.—[Official Report, Commons, 4/11/15; col. 969.]

However, Clause 58(5)(c) states:

“An authorisation … may, in particular, require a telecommunications operator who controls or provides a telecommunication system to obtain or disclose data relating to the use of a telecommunications service provided by another telecommunications operator in relation to that system”.

Surely this means third-party data.

Amendment 116 would alter Clause 58(5)(c) to read, “may not require”. The key point here is that telecommunications companies should not be forced to obtain third-party data. The draft code of practice on communications data states at paragraph 2.61:

“A data retention notice can never require a CSP to retain the content of communications or third party data”.

Paragraph 2.66 states:

“A CSP cannot be required to retain third party data as part of an ICR”.

Amendment 154 would add a new subsection to Clause 83(2)—the clause headed “Powers to require retention of certain data”—to make explicit that a retention notice may,

“not require a telecommunications operator to retain any third party data, unless that data is retained by the telecommunications operator for its own business purposes”.

This is to distinguish between communications data that the telecommunications operator may have and being forced to acquire third-party data that it does not have.

Amendment 235 would restrict the definition of communications data in Clause 233(5) so that it relates to the provision of the service by that operator and not a third party. I beg to move Amendment 116.