Power to modify section 61 and Schedule 4

Part of Investigatory Powers Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 9:45 am on 19 April 2016.

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Photo of Keir Starmer Keir Starmer Shadow Minister (Home Office) 9:45, 19 April 2016

I rise to put on the record a concern about the clause and to remind the Committee that with the wide power of retention, the safeguards on access provisions are critical to the operation of the Bill as a whole. Broadly speaking, the safeguards are: who can authorise access, what the test is, the scope of the conduct authorised and such checks and limits as are otherwise put in the Bill. The clause covers who can authorise access, and my strong feeling is that that should be in the Bill rather than left to regulations, because it is a central safeguard. I will not vote against the clause, but I want to put on the record my view that a provision as important as who can access should be in the Bill and that amendments should be made to legislation rather than through regulation.