techUK summarises Government Intelligence Report

techUK has read and made recommendations on’s review into the Operational Case for Bulk Powers (of interception, acquisition of communications data, acquisition of personal datasets and equipment interference) published by Parliament.

The review was based on 60 detailed case studies provided by MI5, MI6 and GCHQ, together with associated intelligence reports, internal documents from each of the Agencies and the questioning of some 85 intelligence officials, including on whether other methods could have achieved the same results.

Responding to David Anderson’s Bulk Powers Review, Antony Walker, deputy CEO of techUK, summarised the findings: “There is a proven operational case for three of the powers under review (bulk interception, bulk acquisition of communications data and bulk personal datasets) and that although other techniques could sometimes be used to achieve similar objectives, they would often be less effective, more dangerous, more resource-intensive, more intrusive or slower.

“There is a distinct, though not yet proven, operational case for the fourth power under review – bulk equipment interference.”

He added: “The single, main recommendation from the report is that due to the pace of technological change, the Investigatory Powers Bill should be amended to provide for a Technical Advisory Panel of security-cleared independent academics and industry experts to be appointed by the Investigatory Powers Commission (IPC) “to advise the IPC and the Secretary of State on the impact of changing technology on the exercise of investigatory powers and on the availability of techniques to use those powers while minimising interference with privacy.”


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