Home Office whistleblowers - hints and tips

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The Home Office has been "dysfunctional and unfit for purpose" for several years now. It is only recently that the mainstream media has started reporting how bad things actually are.

The "crisis" seems to be fuelled by revelations in the newspapers and the broadcast media, e.g.

Sunday Times: Focus: Home Office in meltdown

The Guardian: Unfit or unfair: was Reid right about the Home Office?

However the Home Office Public Relations spin and disinformation machinery seems to be carrying on regardless, according to The Guardian: Home Office still burying bad news, say reporters

A couple of UK political bloggers are actively soliciting , or have commented on the likelihood of further "leaks" from disgruntled Home Office Civil Servants i.e. not the usual spin doctor briefings and "Whitehall sources" stories planted in the weekend newspapers, ahead of a policy announcement in Parliament, but actual examples of even more incompetence and bad management from whistleblowers elsewhere in the bureaucracy.

Guido Fawkes: The Truth Is Out There : Tell It!

Ian Dale's Diary: Why the Home Office Will Leak Like a Sieve

Ian Dale suggests that whistleblowers may be contacting the Shadow Home Secretary David Davis by email ,

Now, what was that email again? davisd AT parliament dot uk, I seem to remember.

This is something which was done before the Beverly Hughes resignation as Secretary of State for Immigration, Citizenship and Nationality back in 1994, when David Davis was contacted by whistleblowers Steve Moxon in Sheffield and and James Cameron in Bucharest. This episode boosted the political career of David Davis.

However, we asked at the time,
Is the Shadow Home Secretary's email being monitored ?

Our questions about whether or not the 40 year old Wilson Doctrine about "not tapping MPs telephones", has been updated and whether or not it also applies to their mobile phones, faxes and electronic mail, none of which existed when the Wilson Doctrine was uttered in 1966, remain unanswered.

Steve Moxon and James Cameron found that the supposed protections for whistleblowers under employment law, the Public Interest Disclosure Act 1998 did not seem to help them very much.

Our own experiences of the unfair treatment of a rightly disgruntled Home Office Immigration and Nationality Directorate Field Intelligence Officer bear this out. He was , apparently suspended from duty for contacting Spy Blog with details of his case, under the terms of the Civil Service Code, which forms part of the contract of employment for civil servants.

The fact that this Code is breached every week by Ministers, their Special Advisors, lobbyists, spin doctors etc.

"the duty not to use public resources for party political purposes, to uphold the political impartiality of the Civil Service, and not to ask civil servants to act in any way which would conflict with the Civil Service Code;"

does not make the experience any the less stressful for more junior staff who act as whistleblowers.

"10 Civil servants should not without authority disclose official information which has been communicated in confidence within the Administration, or received in confidence from others. Nothing in the Code should be taken as overriding existing statutory or common law obligations to keep confidential, or to disclose, certain information. They should not seek to frustrate or influence the policies, decisions or actions of Ministers, Assembly Secretaries or the National Assembly as a body by the unauthorised, improper or premature disclosure outside the Administration of any information to which they have had access as civil servants.

Many UK political bloggers are willing to publish controversial or leaked Government documents or memos e.g. all those who offered to Publish the Bomb Al-Jazeera Memo. However, if any of them should be lucky or unlucky enough to actually be the first people to be contacted by a Government whistleblower, they have an ethical duty to protect the identity of their "journalistic source".

This can be a quite difficult, especially if the Government wastes our taxpayers' money on a large scale "leak inquiry", as they have done in the past.

Spy Blog's hints and tips for Home Office (or other Government or corporate) whistleblowers, UK political bloggers and the media: - admittedly these are slightly paranoid, but unfortunately necessary to at least consider, if you plan to shame this media obsessed Labour Government, by becoming a whistleblower:

See our new Hints and Tips for Whistleblowers mini-blog - Technical Hints and Tips for the anonymity of sources for Whistleblowers, Investigative Journalists, Campaign Activists and Political Bloggers

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Good list, a handy reference...

At the same time though, I have to wonder what leaks are deliberate and/or tolerated, and what the ends *really* are in all of this.

Out of the discussion I've managed to catch on the news, the impression I get is that the timing is impeccable. The contrast between the extent of the "damage" and the "butt-kicking mode" of John Reid is inseparable.

I have no doubt that the state of the Home Office is FUBAR, but one must question why it has all come to light now. Now that the ID Bill has gone through, and also now that Tony's position is looking extremely untenable.

As far as I can see, there are two things that will come out of this "disgraceful" situation. Firstly, the argument for increased tracking systems (including, but not limited to an ID system) will have gained ground tenfold. If immigrants and escaped, "untrackable" (without large, inefficient amounts of police time) convicts are running around committing crime within our midst, the only way to filter them out is to give everyone some token of their identification, and a system to go with it.

Secondly, such a "scandal" (which, as you point out in the first sentence, it's not) is the best mechanism to implement rapid overhaul. It is, or is soon to be, a revolution that will go down as a success - if only because the current system has revealed to be so "appalling". And this is what will stick in the public memory - the success of Blair and Reid combined, the reformers, the guerilla revolutionaries intent on extracting the rot from public administration and claiming all along that they were the saviours. Just as with Iraq, they want to be met with cheers, whilst everyone handily forgets that they were mostly responsible for the mess that existed in the first place.

Leaks are to be encouraged and welcomed of course, but they should also be treated with the suspicion that anything emitted from the bowels of government deserves. Blame needs to be remembered.

Worth sharing.

It's a good list but far from complete (eg. you should delete your "Recent" docs and while in Internet Options also do "Content > Auto Complete > Clear Forms") and it makes me dizzy to think about it leave alone someone who's not techie.

Simple rules are

(i) You can trust no one. Figure a way of maintaining your anonymity.

(ii) Talk to a solicitor before you do anything. Even if you weren't the whistleblower you could get your door kicked in in the early hours and not get to speak to anyone rational for 28 days.
Also a solicitor might know someone like wtwu who could advise you on how to do it.

(iii) Documents and audio files can be "watermarked" which can make them directly traceable back to you. Likewise printers and photocopiers may leave ID. Find out how to get around this before you pass them on.

(iv) If poss. don't use a computer at all for your nefarious deeds. Not at work or at home. If you need email open a web based account (eg hushmail as recommended above) and use it from a variety of internet cafes.

I kid you not, I have forensic software that can tell me all that's been done on a computer since the first time it was turned on. (I can also make it look like it's never been turned on but then, I'm not Joe Soap, I'm a security nut :)

@ Scribe.

My opinion is that Reid's sudden revelations about the state of the Home Office have nothing to do with the Home Office and everything to do with his ambitions to become PM. The other two main contenders for the run off both served there and he buried Clarke within a couple of days. He's endeavouring to ruin Straw by implication of what a mess he made there before he went on to ruin our reputation in the world over Iraq.
He'll run against Brown saying that B has tarred Labour with stealth taxes and squandered the money because Health and Education still need reform.

His pitch to the Right of the LP will be that the revolution continues and to the Left that we should re-evaluate PFI.

In the last four weeks, the odds on him becoming PM have dropped from 100:1 to 14:1.

If you want cheering up :) go online to Radio 4 and "Listen Again" to "Any Answers" for Sat 27 May. The first item is about George Galloway's latest provocation and every caller supports him, many of them call for Blair to be put on trial. You can hear J Dimbleby blanching!!

Nice list. I wrote a guide to this subject for the OSCE a few years ago, and you can read that chapter here (pp.187-196).

Another guide worth perusing is the Reporters sans Frontières - Handbook for Bloggers and Cyber-Dissidents.

It is frightening that we should even have to be considering using techniques designed to help political dissidents living under repressive police states, here in the United Kingdom.

Due to excessive and pointless spam, Trackbacks are currently disabled on Spy Blog, so here is a link back to the "Protecting whistleblowers" article by Ian Brown.

My best suggestion for a government whistleblower today would be to attempt to make contact with a journalist using a payphone, and arrange a physical meeting where the journalist can make notes based on a document without taking an actual duplicate.

Sound advice.

However, in London, especially, a feature of the Northern Irish terrorist bombing campaigns was the extensive use of "warnings" from payphones, to newspaper or broadcast media offices. Many of these "recognised code word message" warnings were deliberately too late or too vague for bomb target areas to always be evacuated in time.

There were also a large number of bomb hoax calls (not just to the emergency services 999 / 112 number), some from the terrorists, some from mentally unstable attention seekers.

This led to the development of the ability to almost instantly position fix any call from a public payphone, certainly in London and to pass this information this on to a Police control room.

We speculate that it is therefore likley that Communications Data Traffic records of any payphone call to a newspaper or tv or radio studio are likely to be retained and analysed as a matter of routine.

British Telecom payphones come in two varieties, the coin operated ones, on which you risk leaving fingerprint and DNA samples, which might betray your identity as a whistleblower, depending on the level of resources being applied to a "leak investigation", and the card operated ones.

Like all our advice above, it should be obvious , with a moment's thought, that a whstleblower should not use a a credit card or a BT Charge Card to make a phone call, as this could reveal a name and address.

Even if these details are deliberately false, do not phone home or work, to use up the remaining credit on the BT Charge Card, as the pattern of calls made using that card can easily be analysed.

Similarly any use of a Transport for London Oyster travel card on the Tube or Buses is likely to be used to attempt to cross reference CCTV images of a whistleblower, as they travel to or from a meeting with , for example, a journalist who is being kept surveillance.

See Oyster Card data used by the Police

I think a good spy should always have his or her saftey gear

@ Franki - there are differences between spies and whistleblowers - the latter run more risk of discovery, because of who they are giving information to i.e. journalists, politicians, campaign activists or perhaps bloggers.

Dear Sirs For just how much longer will the great British Public continue to accept the intrusiveness of CCTV. We are now being
given PNRS to follow your every move on the Public Highway. We are told (Tongue in Cheek) that it will catch all those 'bad boys' that neither Tax nor Insure their Motor Vehicles. What they do not tell you is that they can also track any car, anywhere in the UK. Any car, applying to approx. 90% of the population. But
of course, that is not the object of the exercise - is
it. Identity cards by any other name. Our friends in the MVL dept. are fully aware that S/H cars can be bought at Auction, no name no pack drill. Used for one off crimes and then torched. Why worry, the majority are very law abiding so they can hammer them.
CCTV within Shops, Towns are totaly an invasion of privicy. The next and most frightening of all are RIFDS. If you no not what they are, then I suggest all investigate. Beware, be
very aware when you shop, and this is only the begining.

Guido Fawkes is, perfectly reasonably, asking for whistleblowers who may have important information regarding any possible Financial Services Authority investigation iinto the seemingly dubious lending activities of the Trades Union and Cooperative Bank plc funded Unity Trust Bank, which seems to have lent a large percentage of its relatively small capital base to the Labour Party, despite its "ethical" lending and investment policy.

Skype Voice over IP is one of the methods of contacting prominent bloggers like Guido Fawkes with tips which may well be picked up subsequently by the mainstream media.

However, please remember that although Skype offers content privacy through encrypted conversations, Skype does not offer anonymity protection against Communications Traffic Data analysis.

Even if the conversation is set up and relayed through, a network of low latency anonymising proxies, like Tor, or through other open proxy servers around the world (not the default behavior of the software), the time sensitive nature of VoIP traffic seems to enable Government level snoopers to introduce characteristic signal delays, which can allow such VoIP calls to be traced, even with these non standard precautions.

See Bruce Schneier's blog

This is a fantastic resource of the highest order. I am proud to say that I have added a link to this page.

I think it is vital that those who wish to act in the public interest and release information be able to do so safly.

I am thinking that maybe a list of (self-certified) "safe to leak to" bloggers (and the obligitory "I keep my sources secret" badge) might be a usefull resource especially if it's in a place where bloggers can feel free to replubish the aformentioned "safe to leak to" list.

EXIF information in JPEG images: one excellent free Windows image viewer and editor, IrfanView, can delete EXIF information during "Save as". A Windows command-line utility jhead can expunge from a JPEG image file all non-image data and tags.

@ PK - thanks for the .jpeg suggestions



The jhead documentation and program options make the point, that even if you have digitally manipulated the main .jpg or .jpeg file, e.g. to pixellate out someone's face or a street name or vehicle number plate etc. many digital cameras embed a small, typically 10Kb thumbnail of the main image, which may need separate manipulation or (using jhead) re-generation, or better still, deletion.

Just a brief acknowledgement of the fine (and very comprehensive) work here.

A pity that society is now so oppressed that free speech and fair comment are reduced to these levels. Even more so that so many institutions of all kinds spend exorbitant effort on killing the messengers, rather than righting the wrongs. Nonetheless, more power to you!

I wonder how many Government whistleblowers go through this website...


I guess we'll never know!

I initiate a by crowd of soups that valid extraordinary, and can be made in big batches and frozen.
Is there any interest?

Leave a comment

About this blog

This United Kingdom based blog attempts to draw public attention to, and comments on, some of the current trends in ever cheaper and more widespread surveillance technology being deployed to satisfy the rapacious demand by state and corporate bureaucracies and criminals for your private details, and the technological ignorance of our politicians and civil servants who frame our legal systems.

The hope is that you the readers, will help to insist that strong safeguards for the privacy of the individual are implemented, especially in these times of increased alert over possible terrorist or criminal activity. If the systems which should help to protect us can be easily abused to supress our freedoms, then the terrorists will have won.

We know that there are decent, honest, trustworthy individual politicians, civil servants, law enforcement, intelligence agency personnel and broadcast, print and internet journalists etc., who often feel powerless or trapped in the system. They need the assistance of external, detailed, informed, public scrutiny to help them to resist deliberate or unthinking policies, which erode our freedoms and liberties.

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Please feel free to email your views about this blog, or news about the issues it tries to comment on.


Our PGP public encryption key is available for those correspondents who wish to send us news or information in confidence, and also for those of you who value your privacy, even if you have got nothing to hide.

You can download a free copy of the PGP encryption software from www.pgpi.org
(available for most of the common computer operating systems, and also in various Open Source versions like GPG)

We look forward to the day when UK Government Legislation, Press Releases and Emails etc. are Digitally Signed under the HMG PKI Root Certificate hierarchy so that we can be assured that they are not fakes. Trusting that the digitally signed content makes any sense, is another matter entirely.

Hints and Tips for Whistleblowers and Political Dissidents

Please take the appropriate precautions if you are planning to blow the whistle on shadowy and powerful people in Government or commerce, and their dubious policies. The mainstream media and bloggers also need to take simple precautions to help preserve the anonymity of their sources e.g. see Spy Blog's Hints and Tips for Whistleblowers - or use this easier to remember link: http://ht4w.co.uk

BlogSafer - wiki with multilingual guides to anonymous blogging

Digital Security & Privacy for Human Rights Defenders manual, by Irish NGO Frontline Defenders.

Everyone’s Guide to By-Passing Internet Censorship for Citizens Worldwide (.pdf - 31 pages), by the Citizenlab at the University of Toronto.

Handbook for Bloggers and Cyber-Dissidents - March 2008 version - (2.2 Mb - 80 pages .pdf) by Reporters Without Borders

Reporters Guide to Covering the Beijing Olympics by Human Rights Watch.

A Practical Security Handbook for Activists and Campaigns (v 2.6) (.doc - 62 pages), by experienced UK direct action political activists

Convention on Modern Liberty - 28th Feb 2009

Convention on Modern Liberty - 28th Feb 2009
Convention on Modern Liberty - 28th Feb 2009

The Convention is being held in the Logan Hall and adjoining rooms at the Institute of Education in Bloomsbury, central London.


The Institute of Education
20 Bedford Way

There are video linked screenings or other parallel meetings being held across the UK in Belfast. Bristol, Cambridge, Cardiff and Manchester.

Convention on Modern Liberty blog

David Davis for Freedom

House of Lords Constitution Committee - Surveillance: Citizens and the State

House of Lords Constitution Committee 2008-2009 session - Second Report: Surveillance: Citizens and the State


Watching Them, Watching Us

London 2600

Our UK Freedom of Information Act request tracking blog

WikiLeak.org - ethical and technical discussion about the WikiLeaks.org project for anonymous mass leaking of documents etc.

Privacy and Security

Privacy International
Privacy and Human Rights Survey 2004

Cryptome - censored or leaked government documents etc.

Identity Project report by the London School of Economics
Surveillance & Society the fully peer-reviewed transdisciplinary online surveillance studies journal

Statewatch - monitoring the state and civil liberties in the European Union

The Policy Laundering Project - attempts by Governments to pretend their repressive surveillance systems, have to be introduced to comply with international agreements, which they themselves have pushed for in the first place

International Campaign Against Mass Surveillance

ARCH Action Rights for Children in Education - worried about the planned Children's Bill Database, Connexions Card, fingerprinting of children, CCTV spy cameras in schools etc.

Foundation for Information Policy Research
UK Crypto - UK Cryptography Policy Discussion Group email list

Technical Advisory Board on internet and telecomms interception under RIPA

European Digital Rights

Open Rights Group - a UK version of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a clearinghouse to raise digital rights and civil liberties issues with the media and to influence Governments.

Digital Rights Ireland - legal case against mandatory EU Comms Data Retention etc.

Blindside - "What’s going to go wrong in our e-enabled world? " blog and wiki and Quarterly Report will supposedly be read by the Cabinet Office Central Sponsor for Information Assurance. Whether the rest of the Government bureaucracy and the Politicians actually listen to the CSIA, is another matter.

Biometrics in schools - 'A concerned parent who doesn't want her children to live in "1984" type society.'

Human Rights

Liberty Human Rights campaigners

British Institute of Human Rights
Amnesty International

Prevent Genocide International

asboconcern - campaign for reform of Anti-Social Behavior Orders

Front Line Defenders - Irish charity - Defenders of Human Rights Defenders

Internet Censorship

OpenNet Initiative - researches and measures the extent of actual state level censorship of the internet. Features a blocked web URL checker and censorship map.

Committee to Protect Bloggers - "devoted to the protection of bloggers worldwide with a focus on highlighting the plight of bloggers threatened and imprisoned by their government."

Reporters without Borders internet section - news of internet related censorship and repression of journalists, bloggers and dissidents etc.

Judicial Links

British and Irish Legal Information Institute - publishes the full text of major case Judgments

Her Majesty's Courts Service - publishes forthcoming High Court etc. cases (but only in the next few days !)

House of Lords - The Law Lords are currently the supreme court in the UK - will be moved to the new Supreme Court in October 2009.

Information Tribunal - deals with appeals under FOIA, DPA both for and against the Information Commissioner

Investigatory Powers Tribunal - deals with complaints about interception and snooping under RIPA - has almost never ruled in favour of a complainant.

Parliamentary Opposition

Home Office Watch blog, "a single repository of all the shambolic errors and mistakes made by the British Home Office compiled from Parliamentary Questions, news reports, and tip-offs by the Liberal Democrat Home Affairs team."

UK Government

Home Office - "Not fit for purpose. It is inadequate in terms of its scope, it is inadequate in terms of its information technology, leadership, management systems and processes" - Home Secretary John Reid. 23rd May 2006. Not quite the fount of all evil legislation in the UK, but close.

No. 10 Downing Street Prime Minister's Official Spindoctors

Public Bills before Parliament

United Kingdom Parliament
Home Affairs Committee of the House of Commons.

House of Commons "Question Book"

UK Statute Law Database - is the official revised edition of the primary legislation of the United Kingdom made available online, but it is not yet up to date.

FaxYourMP - identify and then fax your Member of Parliament
WriteToThem - identify and then contact your Local Councillors, members of devolved assemblies, Member of Parliament, Members of the European Parliament etc.
They Work For You - House of Commons Hansard made more accessible ? UK Members of the European Parliament

Read The Bills Act - USA proposal to force politicians to actually read the legislation that they are voting for, something which is badly needed in the UK Parliament.

Bichard Inquiry delving into criminal records and "soft intelligence" policies highlighted by the Soham murders. (taken offline by the Home Office)

ACPO - Association of Chief Police Officers - England, Wales and Northern Ireland
ACPOS Association of Chief Police Officers in Scotland

Online Media

Boing Boing

Need To Know [now defunct]

The Register

NewsNow Encryption and Security aggregate news feed
KableNet - UK Government IT project news
PublicTechnology.net - UK eGovernment and public sector IT news
eGov Monitor

Ideal Government - debate about UK eGovernment

NIR and ID cards

Stand - email and fax campaign on ID Cards etc. [Now defunct]. The people who supported stand.org.uk have gone on to set up other online tools like WriteToThem.com. The Government's contemptuous dismissal of over 5,000 individual responses via the stand.org website to the Home Office public consultation on Entitlement Cards is one of the factors which later led directly to the formation of the the NO2ID Campaign who have been marshalling cross party opposition to Labour's dreadful National Identity Register compulsory centralised national biometric database and ID Card plans, at the expense of simpler, cheaper, less repressive, more effective, nore secure and more privacy friendly alternative identity schemes.

NO2ID - opposition to the Home Office's Compulsory Biometric ID Card
NO2ID bulletin board discussion forum

Home Office Identity Cards website
No compulsory national Identity Cards (ID Cards) BBC iCan campaign site
UK ID Cards blog
NO2ID press clippings blog
CASNIC - Campaign to STOP the National Identity Card.
Defy-ID active meetings and protests in Glasgow
www.idcards-uk.info - New Alliance's ID Cards page
irefuse.org - total rejection of any UK ID Card

International Civil Aviation Organisation - Machine Readable Travel Documents standards for Biometric Passports etc.
Anti National ID Japan - controversial and insecure Jukinet National ID registry in Japan
UK Biometrics Working Group run by CESG/GCHQ experts etc. the UK Government on Biometrics issues feasability
Citizen Information Project feasability study population register plans by the Treasury and Office of National Statistics

CommentOnThis.com - comments and links to each paragraph of the Home Office's "Strategic Action Plan for the National Identity Scheme".

De-Materialised ID - "The voluntary alternative to material ID cards, A Proposal by David Moss of Business Consultancy Services Ltd (BCSL)" - well researched analysis of the current Home Office scheme, and a potentially viable alternative.

Surveillance Infrastructures

National Roads Telecommunications Services project - infrastruture for various mass surveillance systems, CCTV, ANPR, PMMR imaging etc.

CameraWatch - independent UK CCTV industry lobby group - like us, they also want more regulation of CCTV surveillance systems.

Every Step You Take a documentary about CCTV surveillance in the Uk by Austrian film maker Nino Leitner.

Transport for London an attempt at a technological panopticon - London Congestion Charge, London Low-Emission Zone, Automatic Number Plate Recognition cameras, tens of thousands of CCTV cameras on buses, thousands of CCTV cameras on London Underground, realtime road traffic CCTV, Iyster smart cards - all handed over to the Metropolitan Police for "national security" purposes, in real time, in bulk, without any public accountibility, for secret data mining, exempt from even the usual weak protections of the Data Protection Act 1998.

RFID Links

RFID tag privacy concerns - our own original article updated with photos

NoTags - campaign against individual item RFID tags
Position Statement on the Use of RFID on Consumer Products has been endorsed by a large number of privacy and human rights organisations.
RFID Privacy Happenings at MIT
Surpriv: RFID Surveillance and Privacy
RFID Scanner blog
RFID Gazette
The Sorting Door Project

RFIDBuzz.com blog - where we sometimes crosspost RFID articles

Genetic Links

DNA Profiles - analysis by Paul Nutteing
GeneWatch UK monitors genetic privacy and other issues
Postnote February 2006 Number 258 - National DNA Database (.pdf) - Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology

The National DNA Database Annual Report 2004/5 (.pdf) - published by the NDNAD Board and ACPO.

Miscellanous Links

Michael Field - Pacific Island news - no longer a paradise
freetotravel.org - John Gilmore versus USA internal flight passports and passenger profiling etc.

The BUPA Seven - whistleblowers badly let down by the system.

Tax Credit Overpayment - the near suicidal despair inflicted on poor, vulnerable people by the then Chancellor Gordon Brown's disasterous Inland Revenue IT system.

Fassit UK - resources and help for those abused by the Social Services Childrens Care bureaucracy

Former Spies

MI6 v Tomlinson - Richard Tomlinson - still being harassed by his former employer MI6

Martin Ingram, Welcome To The Dark Side - former British Army Intelligence operative in Northern Ireland.

Operation Billiards - Mitrokhin or Oshchenko ? Michael John Smith - seeking to overturn his Official Secrets Act conviction in the GEC case.

The Dirty Secrets of MI5 & MI6 - Tony Holland, Michael John Smith and John Symond - stories and chronologies.

Naked Spygirl - Olivia Frank

Blog Links

e-nsecure.net blog - Comments on IT security and Privacy or the lack thereof.
Rat's Blog -The Reverend Rat writes about London street life and technology
Duncan Drury - wired adventures in Tanzania & London
Dr. K's blog - Hacker, Author, Musician, Philosopher

David Mery - falsely arrested on the London Tube - you could be next.

James Hammerton
White Rose - a thorn in the side of Big Brother
Big Blunkett
Into The Machine - formerly "David Blunkett is an Arse" by Charlie Williams and Scribe
infinite ideas machine - Phil Booth
Louise Ferguson - City of Bits
Chris Lightfoot
Oblomovka - Danny O'Brien

Liberty Central

dropsafe - Alec Muffett
The Identity Corner - Stefan Brands
Kim Cameron - Microsoft's Identity Architect
Schneier on Security - Bruce Schneier
Politics of Privacy Blog - Andreas Busch
solarider blog

Richard Allan - former Liberal Democrat MP for Sheffield Hallam
Boris Johnson Conservative MP for Henley
Craig Murray - former UK Ambassador to Uzbekistan, "outsourced torture" whistleblower

Howard Rheingold - SmartMobs
Global Guerrillas - John Robb
Roland Piquepaille's Technology Trends

Vmyths - debunking computer security hype

Nick Leaton - Random Ramblings
The Periscope - Companion weblog to Euro-correspondent.com journalist network.
The Practical Nomad Blog Edward Hasbrouck on Privacy and Travel
Policeman's Blog
World Weary Detective

Martin Stabe
B2fxxx - Ray Corrigan
Matt Sellers
Grits for Breakfast - Scott Henson in Texas
The Green Ribbon - Tom Griffin
Guido Fawkes blog - Parliamentary plots, rumours and conspiracy.
The Last Ditch - Tom Paine
The (e)State of Tim - Tim Hicks
Ilkley Against CCTV
Tim Worstall
Bill's Comment Page - Bill Cameron
The Society of Qualified Archivists
The Streeb-Greebling Diaries - Bob Mottram

Your Right To Know - Heather Brooke - Freedom off Information campaigning journalist

Ministry of Truth _ Unity's V for Vendetta styled blog.

Bloggerheads - Tim Ireland

W. David Stephenson blogs on homeland security et al.
EUrophobia - Nosemonkey

Blogzilla - Ian Brown

BlairWatch - Chronicling the demise of the New Labour Project

dreamfish - Robert Longstaff

Informaticopia - Rod Ward


The Musings of Harry

Chicken Yoghurt - Justin McKeating

The Red Tape Chronicles - Bob Sullivan MSNBC

Campaign Against the Legislative and Regulatory Reform Bill

Stop the Legislative and Regulatory Reform Bill

Rob Wilton's esoterica

panGloss - Innovation, Technology and the Law

Arch Rights - Action on Rights for Children blog

Database Masterclass - frequently asked questions and answers about the several centralised national databases of children in the UK.


Moving On

Steve Moxon blog - former Home Office whistleblower and author.

Al-Muhajabah's Sundries - anglophile blog

Architectures of Control in Design - Dan Lockton

rabenhorst - Kai Billen (mostly in German)

Nearly Perfect Privacy - Tiffany and Morpheus

Iain Dale's Diary - a popular Conservative political blog

Brit Watch - Public Surveillance in the UK - Web - Email - Databases - CCTV - Telephony - RFID - Banking - DNA


MySecured.com - smart mobile phone forensics, information security, computer security and digital forensics by a couple of Australian researchers

Ralph Bendrath

Financial Cryptography - Ian Grigg et al.

UK Liberty - A blog on issues relating to liberty in the UK

Big Brother State - "a small act of resistance" to the "sustained and systematic attack on our personal freedom, privacy and legal system"

HosReport - "Crisis. Conspiraciones. Enigmas. Conflictos. Espionaje." - Carlos Eduardo Hos (in Spanish)

"Give 'em hell Pike!" - Frank Fisher

Corruption-free Anguilla - Good Governance and Corruption in Public Office Issues in the British Overseas Territory of Anguilla in the West Indies - Don Mitchell CBE QC

geeklawyer - intellectual property, civil liberties and the legal system

PJC Journal - I am not a number, I am a free Man - The Prisoner

Charlie's Diary - Charlie Stross

The Caucus House - blog of the Chicago International Model United Nations

Famous for 15 Megapixels

Postman Patel

The 4th Bomb: Tavistock Sq Daniel's 7:7 Revelations - Daniel Obachike

OurKingdom - part of OpenDemocracy - " will discuss Britain’s nations, institutions, constitution, administration, liberties, justice, peoples and media and their principles, identity and character"

Beau Bo D'Or blog by an increasingly famous digital political cartoonist.

Between Both Worlds - "Thoughts & Ideas that Reflect the Concerns of Our Conscious Evolution" - Kingsley Dennis

Bloggerheads: The Alisher Usmanov Affair - the rich Uzbek businessman and his shyster lawyers Schillings really made a huge counterproductive error in trying to censor the blogs of Tim Ireland, of all people.

Matt Wardman political blog analysis

Henry Porter on Liberty - a leading mainstream media commentator and opinion former who is doing more than most to help preserve our freedom and liberty.

HMRC is shite - "dedicated to the taxpayers of Britain, and the employees of the HMRC, who have to endure the monumental shambles that is Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC)."

Head of Legal - Carl Gardner a former legal advisor to the Government

The Landed Underclass - Voice of the Banana Republic of Great Britain

Henrik Alexandersson - Swedish blogger threatened with censorship by the Försvarets Radioanstalt (FRA), the Swedish National Defence Radio Establishement, their equivalent of the UK GCHQ or the US NSA.

World's First Fascist Democracy - blog with link to a Google map - "This map is an attempt to take a UK wide, geographical view, of both the public and the personal effect of State sponsored fear and distrust as seen through the twisted technological lens of petty officials and would be bureaucrats nationwide."

Blogoir - Charles Crawford - former UK Ambassodor to Poland etc.

No CCTV - The Campaign against CCTV

Barcode Nation - keeping two eyes on the database state.

Lords of the Blog - group blog by half a dozen or so Peers sitting in the House of Lords.

notes from the ubiquitous surveillance society - blog by Dr. David Murakami Wood, editor of the online academic journal Surveillance and Society

Other Links

Spam Huntress - The Norwegian Spam Huntress - Ann Elisabeth

Fuel Crisis Blog - Petrol over £1 per litre ! Protest !
Mayor of London Blog
London Olympics 2012 - NO !!!!

Cool Britannia

Identity Cards Bill clause by clause analysis and comments


Free Gary McKinnon - UK citizen facing extradition to the USA for "hacking" over 90 US Military computer systems.

Parliament Protest - information and discussion on peaceful resistance to the arbitrary curtailment of freedom of assembly and freedom of speech, in the excessive Serious Organised Crime and Police Act 2005 Designated Area around Parliament Square in London.

RIPA Consultations

RIPA Part III consultation blog - Government access to Encrypted Information and Encryption Keys.

RIPA Part I Chapter II consultation blog - Government access and disclosure of Communications Traffic Data

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March 2009

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UK Legislation

The United Kingdom suffers from tens of thousands of pages of complicated criminal laws, and thousands of new, often unenforceable criminal offences, which have been created as a "Pretend to be Seen to Be Doing Something" response to tabloid media hype and hysteria, and political social engineering dogmas. These overbroad, catch-all laws, which remove the scope for any judicial appeals process, have been rubber stamped, often without being read, let alone properly understood, by Members of Parliament.

The text of many of these Acts of Parliament are now online, but it is still too difficult for most people, including the police and criminal justice system, to work out the cumulative effect of all the amendments, even for the most serious offences involving national security or terrorism or serious crime.

Many MPs do not seem to bother to even to actually read the details of the legislation which they vote to inflict on us.

UK Legislation Links

UK Statute Law Database - is the official revised edition of the primary legislation of the United Kingdom made available online, but it is not yet up to date.

UK Commissioners

UK Commissioners some of whom are meant to protect your privacy and investigate abuses by the bureaucrats.

UK Intelligence Agencies

Intelligence.gov.uk - Cabinet Office hosted portal website to various UK Intelligence Agencies and UK Government intelligence committees and Commissioners etc.

0800 789 321 free, confidential, Anti-Terrorist Hotline (use 999 or 112 to report immediate threats)
Anti-terrorism hotline 0800 789 321 free and confidential - use 999 or 112 to report immediate threats.

MI5 encrypted contact web form use 999 or 112 to report immediate threats
Encrypted MI5 web response form NuLabour's "Climate of Fear" is not the same as the real fight against terror.

syf_logo_120.gif Secure Your Ferliliser logo
Secure Your Fertiliser - advice on ammonium nitrate and urea fertiliser security

cpni_logo_150.gif Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure
Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure - "CPNI provides expert advice to the critical national infrastructure on physical, personnel and information security, to protect against terrorism and other threats."

SIS MI6 careers_logo_sis.gif
Secret Intelligence Service (MI6) recruitment.

Government Communications Headquarters GCHQ

Serious Organised Crime Agency - have cut themselves off from direct contact with the public and businesses - no phone - no email

Defence Advisory (DA) Notice system - voluntary self censorship by the established UK press and broadcast media regarding defence and intelligence topics via the Defence, Press and Broadcasting Advisory Committee.

netcu_logo_150.gif National Extremism Tactical Coordination Unit
National Extremism Tactical Coordination Unit - keeps a watch on animal extremists, genetically modified crop protesters, peace protesters etc.
(some people think that the word salad of acronyms means that NETCU is a spoof website)

Campaign Button Links

Watching Them, Watching Us - UK Public CCTV Surveillance Regulation Campaign
UK Public CCTV Surveillance Regulation Campaign

NO2ID Campaign - cross party opposition to the NuLabour Compulsory Biometric ID Card
NO2ID Campaign - cross party opposition to the NuLabour Compulsory Biometric ID Card and National Identity Register centralised database.

Gary McKinnon is facing extradition to the USA under the controversial Extradition Act 2003, without any prima facie evidence or charges brought against him in a UK court. Try him here in the UK, under UK law.
Gary McKinnon is facing extradition to the USA under the controversial Extradition Act 2003, without any prima facie evidence or charges brought against him in a UK court. Try him here in the UK, under UK law.

FreeFarid.com - Kafkaesque extradition of Farid Hilali under the European Arrest Warrant to Spain

Peaceful resistance to the curtailment of our rights to Free Assembly and Free Speech in the SOCPA Designated Area around Parliament Square and beyond
Parliament Protest blog - resistance to the Designated Area restricting peaceful demonstrations or lobbying in the vicinity of Parliament.

Petition to the European Commission and European Parliament against their vague Data Retention plans
Data Retention is No Solution - Petition to the European Commission and European Parliament against their vague Data Retention plans.

Save Parliament: Legislative and Regulatory Reform Bill (and other issues)
Save Parliament - Legislative and Regulatory Reform Bill (and other issues)

Open Rights Group

The Big Opt Out Campaign - opt out of having your NHS Care Record medical records and personal details stored insecurely on a massive national centralised database.

Tor - the onion routing network
Tor - the onion routing network - "Tor aims to defend against traffic analysis, a form of network surveillance that threatens personal anonymity and privacy, confidential business activities and relationships, and state security. Communications are bounced around a distributed network of servers called onion routers, protecting you from websites that build profiles of your interests, local eavesdroppers that read your data or learn what sites you visit, and even the onion routers themselves."

Tor - the onion routing network
Anonymous Blogging with Wordpress and Tor - useful Guide published by Global Voices Advocacy with step by step software configuration screenshots (updated March 10th 2009).

Amnesty International's irrepressible.info campaign

BlogSafer - wiki with multilingual guides to anonymous blogging

NGO in a box - Security Edition privacy and security software tools

Home Office Watch blog, "a single repository of all the shambolic errors and mistakes made by the British Home Office compiled from Parliamentary Questions, news reports, and tip-offs by the Liberal Democrat Home Affairs team."

Reporters Without Borders - Reporters Sans Frontières - campaign for journalists 'and bloggers' freedom in repressive countries and war zones.

Committee to Protect Bloggers - "devoted to the protection of bloggers worldwide with a focus on highlighting the plight of bloggers threatened and imprisoned by their government."

Icelanders are NOT terrorists ! - despite Gordon Brown and Alistair Darling's use of anti-terrorism legislation to seize the assets of Icelandic banks.

No CCTV - The Campaign Against CCTV


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