Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Big Brother Fear over EU Move to Keep Email Records

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Big Brother Fear over EU Move to Keep Email Records

Article excerpt

Byline: PATRICK HENNESSY

BRUSSELS sparked a major new privacy row today over plans to store records of private telephone calls and emails for up to two years.

Leaked documents show the European Union is set to call for the retention of details of all calls and emails. The information would be made available to national governments.

It could also be shown to European security and intelligence agencies, civil liberties campaigners fear.

The plan was originally drawn up to combat the threat of terrorism but EU officials now claim it is necessary in the fight against all serious crime, including paedophilia and racism.

Britain is said to have argued strongly in favour of the move, which will be debated by ministers from EU member states next month.

If adopted, the rules would apply to the countries which want to join the EU as well as current members.

The data would include the source, destination and time of a call or an email as well as the personal details of a subscriber to any " communication device" such as a mobile or a computer server. …

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