Every email and website to be stored by government

Every email, phone call and website visit is to be recorded and stored after the Coalition Government revived controversial Big Brother snooping plans.

By Tom Whitehead, Home Affairs Editor
Published: 12:40PM BST 20 Oct 2010

It will allow security services and the police to spy on the activities of every Briton who uses a phone or the internet.

Moves to make every communications provider store details for at least a year will be unveiled later this year sparking fresh fears over a return of the surveillance state.

The plans were shelved by the Labour Government last December but the Home Office is now ready to revive them.

It comes despite the Coalition Agreement promised to "end the storage of internet and email records without good reason".

Any suggestion of a central "super database" has been ruled out but the plans are expected to involve service providers storing all users details for a set period of time.

That will allow the security and police authorities to track every phone call, email, text message and website visit made by the public if they argue it is needed to tackle crime or terrorism.

The information will include who is contacting whom, when and where and which websites are visited, but not the content of the conversations or messages.

The move was buried in the Government's Strategic Defence and Security Review, which revealed: "We will introduce a programme to preserve the ability of the security, intelligence and law enforcement agencies to obtain communication data and to intercept communications within the appropriate legal framework.

"This programme is required to keep up with changing technology and to maintain capabilities that are vital to the work these agencies do to protect the public.
Telegraph