An accessible version of the Draft Anti-Social Behaviour Bill


Draft Anti-Social Behaviour Bill

On the 13th December 2012, the Home Office published a Draft Anti-Social Behaviour Bill

Unfortunately it is almost unreadable. unless you either print out 95 pages of legislation.
You cannot use your (.pdf) reader software to do keyword searches, or to copy and paste sections of text into another document e.g. for submission as evidence to the Home Office or to the Home Affairs Committee.

If you have poor eyesight, you cannot use the Speech to Text capability of your software either. Surely this breaks all the politically correct Home Office and Parliamentary policies and the Law regarding Accessibility for Disabled people ?

Spy Blog has wasted a lot of hours trying out the Optical Character Recogbition feature of Google Drive and has produced an Accessible version of the Draft Anti-Social Behaviour Bill in various file formats:

Having read every single word of this Bill, it came as no great surprise that the Home Office's supposeded "tidying up and simplification" of the vast legacy of the Social Control mechanisms and red tape they introduced under the Labour government is horribly complicated, inconsistently draughted and full of probably unintended consequences.

Over broad catch all language = threat to civil liberties

The intention of the Home Office and the Department for Communities and Local Government may be to "tackle" (i.e. Be Seen To Be Doing Something about something that features in the tabloid newspapers) e.g.feral youths hanging about on the streets etc. but the unecessarily broad language of the Bill (full of the usual catch all "any" and "anything" etc.) makes it a threat to civil liberties
e,g, "conduct capable of causing nuisance or annoyance" is far too broad - it is triggered even if there is no actual nuisance or annoyance whatsoever .

Disruption of protests and demonstrations using Dispersal Powers

There is little to stop a Police Constable or a Local Authority bureaucrat or various unamed. unaccountible people working for them, to , for example, use the Dispersion Powers to disrupt and harass peaceful political demonstrations and protests.The fact that there has to be a "official Trades Union dispute picket line" exemption, just as there was in the SOCPA Designated Area around Parliament Square, pretty well proves this legislation can be abused in this way.

Barriers around properties - could easily be used to create ghettos

Why are Local Authorities / Police being given powers to erect barriers which cut off access via Highway rights of way ? There are no safeguards to prevent this power from being used to create Belfast / Israel style ghettos or no-go areas,

Justice only if you are very rich

The attitude of the lawyers who have created this horrible legislation is that since you can, in theory, challenge the various Orders in the High Court, that makes everything ok in regard to compatibility with the Human Rights Act and the ECHR at Strasbourg.

In practice, this is not justice, since unless you are rich , you risk bankruptcy through the expensive legal fees to which the Court system involves, but your opponents have unlimited taxpayer funds and / or in house lawyers to oppose you.

RIPA Part 1 Intercept evidence loophole ?

In their eagerness to stack the legal system against the convicted criminal who is further being punished with an ASBO style order, the Home Office could well be setting themselves up for a major legal challenge to the sanctity of their "must be kept secret under penalty of 2 years in prison" Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act Part 1 Interception of communications evidence.

22 Proceedings on an application for an order
(1) For the purpose of deciding whether to make a criminal behaviour order the court may consider evidence led by the prosecution and evidence led by the offender.
(2) It does not matter whether the evidence would have been admissible in the proceedings in which the offender was convicted.

We look forward to seeing Charles Farr's reaction when a defence barrister asks for discovery of Intercept Evidence, citing the fact that, if passed, it must be the will of Parliament that the ASBA 2013 Act trumps RIPA 2000.

Confiscation of private property

The Bye Laws which were introduced in London around Parliament Square which allow for the confiscation of some specific types of private property i.e. tents , sleeping bags etc. to prevent the "nuisance" of "protest camps" etc. now seem to have mutated into the power to confiscate anything you are carrying , on the whim of the Police Constable or even a Local Council "Heritage Warden" jobsworth, not just in London but throughout England and Wales. N.B. this is not confiscation of illegal stuff like weapons or drugs, or specific things like alcohol in in a "no drinking on the street" zone, thjis is the power to confiscate, say your mobile phone or anything else you are carrying, for , supposedly up to 28 days.

Eviction of the innocent from council houses & discrimination against those in England

The idea that you can be punished for something which you personally did not do, or approve of, should be abhorrent to everyone in the UK.

This Bill tries to create a "Ground" for re-possession i.e. eviction of a fmily from a coincil house etc. on the basis that one of the members of the family or even a Visitor has been convicted of an offence which took place " took place during, and at the scene of, a riot in the United Kingdom".. So this person has already been punished but somehow the rest of their family should also be punished for something which they did not do themselves.

Stunnigly, this applies to a "riot" anywhere in the United Kingdom, including Scotalnd and Northern Ireland, even though this Anti-Social Behaviour Bill is only supposed to deaal with England & Wales.

Note that there is no similar provision for someone living in Wales, let alone Scotland or Northern Ireland. Why is there such unfair treatment of the English ?

Reverse Burden of Proof - having to prove a negative

It is intolerable to introduce the need for a defendant to have to "prove a negative" like this Bill does e.g.

41 Appeals against notices

(1) A person issued with a community protection notice may appeal to a magistrates' court against the notice on any of the following grounds.

1. That the Conduct specified in the community protection notice

(a) did not take place,

(b) has not had a detrimental effect on the quality of life of those in the locality,

(c) has not been of a persistent or continuing nature,

(d) is not unreasonable, or



The Home Office have a Consultation open on one aspect of the ASB Bill, the Community Remedy

All of the Adobe (.pdf) files are fine and Accessible, except for the most important one, the actual text of the Bill itself. (1.2 Mb) (includes accessible Explanatory Notes & inaccessible Bill text)

The Explanatory Notes are searchable or accessible via the latest Adobe XI reader's Text to Speech capability, but the actual text of the Draft ASB Bill, within the same document is Password encrypted so that it cannot be copied and pasted legibly.

You cannot use Adobe Reader or Foxit etc. to search for keywords within this appalling complicated legislation, which runs to 95 pages. Search engines like Google or Bing or Yahoo are similarly hampered.

The Parliament Bills page and the Home Affairs Committee link to this version (1.2 Mb) (includes accessible Explanatory Notes & inaccessible Bill text)

which suffers from exactly the same Accessibility problems - there is no HTML web page version of the Draft ASB Bill on either the Parliament or Home Office websites.

The Home Affairs Select Committee wants to produce its Report into the Draft ASB Bill before the Parliamentary recess, so their deadline for the submission of written evidence is only next week i.e. Wednesday 9th January 2013

Exemption from liability

Why should Local Councils or the Police be given exemption from liability if they or their contractors damage or destroy a property which they have seized or forced the closure of ?

Anti-Social Behaviour Bill



Injunctions to prevent nuisance and annoyance

1 Power to grant injunctions

[Still does not get rid of the unjust NuLabour legalistic trick of inflicting Criminal penalties without using the Criminal standard of proof "beyond reasonable doubt" ]

[evil catch all wording : "conduct capable of causing nuisance or annoyance to any person" is much too broad a definition]

Contents of Injunctions

2 Requirements included injunctions

3 Power of arrest

Applications for injunctions

4 Applications for injunctions

5 Applications Without notice

Interim injunctions

6 Interim injunctions

Variation and discharge

7 Variation or discharge of injunctions

Breach of injunctions

8 Arrest without warrant

9 Issue of arrest warrant

10 Remands

11 Powers in respect of under-18s

Powers of court on application by provider of residential accommodation

12 Power to exclude person from home in cases of violence or risk of harm

13 Tenancy injunctions: exclusion and power of arrest


14 Requirements to consult etc.

15 Appeals against decisions of youth courts

16 Special measures for witnesses

[What about the new UK Protected Persons Service which was announced after this Draft Bill was published ? No liaison with the Ministry of Justice]

17 Children and young persons: disapplication of reporting restrictions

18 Rules of Court

19 Interpretation etc.

20 Saving and transitional provision



Criminal behaviour orders

21 Power to make orders

22 Proceedings on an application for an order

[Creates a legal loophole which allows the legal Discovery / use of RIPA Part 1 Intercept Evidence which was banned in the original criminal trial !]

23 Requirements included in orders

24 Duration of order etc.

[Given the ECHR ruling on "indeterminate sentences for the protection of the public (IPPs)", surely those with "indefinite period" are illegal on exactly the same grounds. Especially of there are ever resorce issues with Approved Training Courses ?]

25 Approved courses

["the court must inform the offender in ordinary language about..."]

[Why can't all legal proceedings be explained in "ordinary language" ?]

Interim orders

26 Interim orders

Variation and discharge

27 Variation or discharge of orders

Breach of orders

28 Breach of order


29 Special measures for witnesses

[What about the new UK Protected Persons Service which was announced after this Draft Bill was published ? No liaison with the Ministry of Justice]

30 Saving and transitional provision



31 Directions excluding a person from an area

[Can and will be abused against peaceful political protests, marches, demonstrations & occupations - the fact that there has to be an exemption for official Trades Union dispute picket lines proves this]

32 Restrictions

[This is unenforceable - ASBoid gang members are going to have fun with this e.g. getting their associates to SMS text them an order for takeaway food or drink etc. i.e. "a contract of services to which the person is a party", allowing them to legally ignore such a section 31 direction. ]

33 Surrender of property

[Confiscation of private property - not weapons etc. - by the police, without a Court Order]

34 Record-keeping

[Could be abused as a sneaky way of gathering names, addresses, phone numbers etc.]

35 Offences

36 Powers of Community support officers

37 Saving and transitional provision





Community protection notices

38 Power to issue notices

39 Occupiers of premises etc

40 Occupier or owner unascertainable

41 Appeals against notices

[You have to prove a negative ! Reverse Burden of Proof !]

Failure to comply with notice

42 Remedial action by local authority

43 Offence of failing to comply with notice

44 Remedial Orders

45 Forfeiture of item used in commission of offence

46 Seizure of item used in commission of offence

[confiscation of otherwise legal private property "on the street" without a Court Order]

47 Fixed penalty notices

Who may issue notices

48 Authorised persons


49 Exemption from liability

[There should not be any special exemption for the Police or Local Authorities or their subcontactors from legal liability for causing damage to property - remove this clause]

50 Issuing of notices

[More than 12 years after the Electronic Communications Act 2000 and Whitehall still can't get the hang of Digitally Signed electronic legal documents or notices]

51 Interpretation of Chapter 1

52 Saving and transitional provision



Public spaces protection orders

53 Power to make orders

54 Duration of orders

55 Variation and discharge of orders

Prohibition on consuming alcohol

56 Premises etc. to which alcohol prohibition does not apply

57 Consumption of alcohol in breach of prohibition in order

Restrictions on public rights of way

58 Orders restricting public right of way over highway

[Power to erect "barriers" around Ghettos]

59 Categories of highway over which public right of way may not be restricted

Validity of orders

60 Challenging the validity of orders

Failure to comply with orders

61 Offence of failing to comply with order

62 Fixed penalty notices


63 Powers of community support officers

64 Byelaws

65 Interpretation of Chapter 2



Closure notices

66 Power to issue closure notices

[ "past" = any time in history]

67 Duration of closure notices

68 Cancellation or Variation of closure notices

69 Service of notices

[More than 12 years after the Electronic Communications Act 2000 and Whitehall still can't get the hang of Digitally Signed electronic legal documents or notices]

Closure orders

70 Power of Court to make closure orders

71 Temporary orders

72 Extension of closure orders

73 Discharge of closure orders


74 Appeals


75 Enforcement of closure orders

76 Offences


77 Access to other premises

78 Reimbursement of costs

79 Exemption from liability

[No! There should be no exemption from liability whatsover !]

80 Compensation

81 Interpretation of Chapter 3

82 Saving and transitional provision

["past" = only 3 months]



Absolute ground for possession: secure tenancies

83 New ground for serious offences or breach of requirements etc

84 Notice requirements for new ground

85 Review requirements for new ground

Absolute ground for possession: assured tenancies

86 Corresponding new ground and notice requirements for assured tenancies

Discretionary grounds: secure and assured tenancies

87 Addition of offences connected with riot to existing possession grounds

[No ! eviction of an innocent household member = communal punishment]

[Anti-English discrimination c.f. Wales, Scotland & Northern Ireland]


88 Restrictions where new possession proceedings in progress etc



Community remedies

89 The community remedy document

90 Anti­-social behaviour etc.: out-­of-court disposals

91 Criminal behaviour: conditional cautions

Response to complaints about anti-social behaviour

93 Review of response to complaints

93 ASB case reviews: interpretation



94 Amendments

95 Orders and regulations

96 Extent

97 Commencement

98 Short title


Schedule 1 - Remands under sections 8 and 9
Schedule 2 - Breach of injunctions: powers of court in respect of under­185

Part 1 - Introductory

Part 2 - Supervision orders

Part 3 - Detention orders

Schedule 3 - Approval of courses and certificates of completion

Schedule4 - Schedule to be inserted as Schedule 2A to the Housing Act 1985

Schedule 5 - ASB case reviews: supplementary provision

Part 1 - Making and revising review procedures etc

Part 2 Inclusion of local providers of social housing among relevant bodies

Part 3 - ASB case reviews

Part 4 - General

Schedule 6 - Minor and consequential amendments

Part 1 Amendments

Part 2 - Consequential repeals

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.

Email & PGP Contact

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.

We wiil use this verifiable public key (the ID is available on several keyservers, twitter etc.) to establish initial contact with whistleblowers and other confidential sources, but will then try to establish other secure, anonymous communications channels, as appropriate.

Current PGP Key ID: 0x122B3C4FD0BD0FB3 which will expire on 1st October 2018.

You can download a free copy of the PGP encryption software from
(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 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:

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

Anonymous Blogging with Wordpress & Tor - useful step by step guide with software configuration screenshots by Ethan Zuckerman at Global Voices Advocacy. (updated March 10th 2009 with the latest Tor / Vidalia bundle details)


Watching Them, Watching Us

London 2600

Our UK Freedom of Information Act request tracking blog - ethical and technical discussion about the project for anonymous mass leaking of documents etc.

Privacy and Security

Privacy International
United Kingdom Privacy Profile (2011)

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

The incompetent yet authoritarian Labour party have not apologised for their time in Government. They are still not providing any proper Opposition to the current Conservative - Liberal Democrat coalition government, on any freedom or civil liberties or privacy or surveillance issues.

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 - 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 have gone on to set up other online tools like The Government's contemptuous dismissal of over 5,000 individual responses via the 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 - New Alliance's ID Cards page - 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 - 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 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.

Eeclaim Your DNA from Britain's National DNA Database - model letters and advice on how to have your DNA samples and profiles removed from the National DNA Database,in spite of all of the nureacratic obstacles which try to prevent this, even if you are innocent.

Miscellanous Links

Michael Field - Pacific Island news - no longer a paradise - 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 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 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

BLOGDIAL - 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

Justin Wylie's political blog

Panopticon blog - by Timothy Pitt-Payne and Anya Proops. Timothy Pitt-Payne is probably the leading legal expert on the UK's Freedom of Information Act law, often appearing on behlaf of the Information Commissioner's Office at the Information Tribunal.

Armed and Dangerous - Sex, software, politics, and firearms. Life’s simple pleasures… - by Open Source Software advocate Eric S. Raymond.

Georgetown Security Law Brief - group blog by the Georgetown Law Center on National Security and the Law , at Georgtown University, Washington D.C, USA.

Big Brother Watch - well connected with the mainstream media, this is a campaign blog by the TaxPayersAlliance, which thankfully does not seem to have spawned Yet Another Campaign Organisation as many Civil Liberties groups had feared.

Spy on Moseley - "Sparkbrook, Springfield, Washwood Heath and Bordesley Green. An MI5 Intelligence-gathering operation to spy on Muslim communities in Birmingham is taking liberties in every sense" - about 150 ANPR CCTV cameras funded by Home Office via the secretive Terrorism and Allied Matters (TAM) section of ACPO.

FitWatch blog - keeps an eye on the activities of some of the controversial Police Forward Intelligence Teams, who supposedly only target "known troublemakers" for photo and video surveillance, at otherwise legal, peaceful protests and demonstrations.

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


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.

Brian Burnell's British / US nuclear weapons history at

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Follow Spy Blog on Twitter

For those of you who find it convenient, there is now a Twitter feed to alert you to new Spy Blog postings.

Please bear in mind the many recent, serious security vulnerabilities which have compromised the Twitter infrastructure and many user accounts, and Twitter's inevitable plans to make money out of you somehow, probably by selling your Communications Traffic Data to commercial and government interests. (same window)


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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 and Security Committee - the supposedly independent Parliamentary watchdog which issues an annual, heavily censored Report every year or so. Currently chaired by the Conservative Sir Malcolm Rifkind. Why should either the intelligence agencies or the public trust this committee, when the untrustworthy ex-Labour Minister Hazel Blears is a member ?

Anti-terrorism hotline - links removed in protest at the Climate of Fear propaganda posters

MI5 Security Service
MI5 Security Service - links to encrypted reporting form removed in protest at the Climate of Fear propaganda posters

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

National Crime Agency - the replacement for the Serious Organised Crime Agency

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.

Foreign Spies / Intelliegence Agencies in the UK

It is not just the UK government which tries to snoop on British companies, organisations and individuals, the rest of the world is constantly trying to do the same, regardless of the mixed efforts of our own UK Intelligence Agencies who are paid to supposedly protect us from them.

For no good reason, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office only keeps the current version of the London Diplomatic List of accredited Diplomats (including some Foreign Intelligence Agency operatives) online.

Presumably every mainstream media organisation, intelligence agency, serious organised crime or terrorist gang keeps historical copies, so here are some older versions of the London Diplomatic List, for the benefit of web search engine queries, for those people who do not want their visits to appear in the FCO web server logfiles or those whose censored internet feeds block access to UK Government websites.

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_150.jpg - 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 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


I'm a Photographer Not a Terrorist !


Power 2010 cross party, political reform campaign


Cracking the Black Box - "aims to expose technology that is being used in inappropriate ways. We hope to bring together the insights of experts and whistleblowers to shine a light into the dark recesses of systems that are responsible for causing many of the privacy problems faced by millions of people."


Open Rights Group - Petition against the renewal of the Interception Modernisation Programme

wblogocrop_150.jpg - Fighting for justice for whistleblowers