MPs, talk to me about the Draft Investigatory Powers Bill.
In all seriousness, I run an ISP and will talk frankly on these issues, but I also have a much deeper understanding of the technical aspects than most CEOs you will talk to. I actually wrote the routing code in AAISP's core router and can pull an IP packet apart by hand. That said, I run a multi-million pound company and have to take a pragmatic view on things as well.
So, cards on the table, where do I stand.
1. I think the mass surveillance (logging internet connections records) is crazy and it would take a hell of a lot to convince me otherwise, but you are welcome to try. The issues include (a) invasion of privacy (b) scope for abuse and thin end of wedge (c) cost and work for ISPs (d) risk of data theft (e) pointlessness as serious criminals will use TOR, etc. Even emotive arguments over lost children do not work as all you find is that they were on Facebook or using WhatsApp, same as every day. Remember, you only got itemised phone bills because telcos wanted to collect that data for themselves - this is very different.
2. I think targeted surveillance of serious criminal suspects is, in principle, not so bad. It does need safeguards, transparency and accountability. There are also a lot of technical aspects that need addressing still.
3. I am not really sure about bulk surveillance that GCHQ does. I'd need to understand more, and how relevant it is in the increasingly "encrypt everything" age to which we are moving.
But I can help with some useful views on all of this, and technical insights, and I know they do some nice food in the House of Commons :-)
This is an open offer - call the A&A press office if interested. Happy to talk to groups or committee, but also happy to talk to individual MPs that just need to understand more about how Internet stuff works - I even do courses on this stuff.
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