It seems that the United Kingdom is in a little bit of trouble today. The government has been accused of selling so called snooping technology to countries such as Egypt, Syria and even Iran or so Privacy International claims. Privacy International is the ones suing the country and by the looks of it, they will not be backing down any time soon with their claims coming in thick and fast.
Apparently, the UK government has sent out snooping technology out to foreign regimes including sanctioned Iran. Most privacy agencies across the world have been asking themselves for a while now as does the U.K. manage to get all of their information and excellent spy equipment and software.
It seems to still baffle a lot of agencies and citizens in the world as to how the country gets all of its information and gadgets from because a lot goes on behind closed doors. However, Privacy International is now claiming that last year, in 2011, Creativity Software had sold location tracking system to Iranians and could still be selling that tracking system right now.
There have also been many other rumours and reports coming from the privacy watchdog that Gamma International were also creating waves and that they sold ‘Fin Spy’ technology. What was more shocking was the technology was heading to Egypt (whom citizens have overthrown the government ruling of Hosni Mubarak). The technology could apparently hack into email accounts, and there was even talk that the technology could seize control of a computer which has fuelled the fire.
Secretary of State, Vince Cable has received a letter from Privacy International asking the UK government to change some of its rules and policies over exported technology. Privacy International has also stated that there haven’t been any controls put into place to help keep check over technology being exported to other regimes. They have also said that the system is outdated and cannot keep pace with how the market has shifted gears; however, the developers believe that controls are not exactly necessary to have.
The UK government has only got two weeks to either update their list of products before they are exported or a judicial review which comes with an injunction also. There doesn’t seem to be much choice unfortunately for the UK government and they will have to do something before the situation gets any worse. However, a spokesperson from Privacy International apparently have said that this will go all the way to court as they believe the UK government will not take any action against the problems.