Extra-territorial application of Part 3

Part of Investigatory Powers Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 2:30 pm on 19 April 2016.

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Photo of John Hayes John Hayes Minister of State (Home Office) (Security) 2:30, 19 April 2016

I will not make a case again for the clause, but I shall say this, in the spirit of helpfulness and kindness. It is really important that the Committee sends out a combined message to overseas communications service providers—on which the obligations will have an important effect because their commercial endeavours have a significant relationship with the powers we are trying to cement in the Bill—so that they have a very clear impression that we as a Committee of this Parliament are clear that we expect them to do their bit to do what is right. We should not, out of a sense of good will, allow ourselves to be misled and encouraged not to have high expectations or make serious demands of those organisations.

I simply say to the hon. and learned Lady that clause 76 is about giving a clear signal, as does clause 57, with which it should be read in tandem, that telecommunications operators should comply with the notice given, whether or not they are in this country. I accept that that is difficult and challenging—I made that point at the outset—but my goodness, it is vital that we take these steps. I know that she is open-minded and a woman of great good will, but we should not allow that to dilute in any way that common message to those big companies. I do not want those companies to get away with anything that that should not get away with.