Britain’s disastrous spying operations

The US’s staunch ally Britain is involved in the spying programs of a global scale.

After Edward Snowdenâ„¢s revelations on US surveillance operations, it has now emerged that the countryâ„¢s staunch ally Britain is also involved in the spying programs of a global scale.

Edward Snowden, who blew the whistle on US illegal surveillance programs, has opened a new front against the UK, saying that the UK eavesdropping agency GCHQ is Å“worse” than the USâ„¢s National Security Agency (NSA) when it comes to snooping on worldwide communications.

According to revelations by the former NSA contractor, GCHQâ„¢s network of cables is able to process massive quantities of information, with no distinction in gathering the data from innocent people or targeted suspects.

The clandestine electronic operation, codenamed Tempora, includes recordings of telephone calls, the content of email messages, Facebook entries and the personal internet history of users.

According to reports, Tempora was trialed in 2008 and established in 2010, under which vast volumes of data are extracted from over 200 fiber-optic cables and processed.

Documents seen by British paper The Guardian also suggests GCHQ was handling 600 million Å“telephone events” each day by last year with full data being preserved for three days and metadata being kept for 30 days.

But this is not all about UKâ„¢s breaching peopleâ„¢s rights.

There are reports that foreign politicians and officials who took part in G20 2009 London meetings had their computers monitored and their phone calls tapped on the instructions of their British government hosts.

According to documents revealed by The Guardian, delegates were tricked into using fake internet cafes set up by British intelligence agencies to collect information from allies.

Revelations by Snowden, who is now charged with espionage by US authorities, has fuelled outrage among Europeans with the EU chief justice Commissioner Viviane Reding writing to British Foreign Secretary William Hague, demanding urgent answers on the scope and extent of the online eavesdropping program.

The German government also angrily challenged UK ministers over the project.

German justice minister, Sabine Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger, described the UK-US operation as a disaster that sounded “like a Hollywood nightmare”.

But what was the need for sugar-coated Draft Communications Data Bill- known as Snoopers’ Charter by the opponents- with GCHQ Tempora project monitoring global phones and internet traffic?

Why snoopersâ„¢ charter even had to be proposed while British officials are already spying not only their own citizens, but also millions of people around the world?


This article originally appeared on: Press TV