Prevent Watch

MI5’s use of personal data was ‘unlawful’, says watchdog

mi5 data collection

The Investigatory Powers Commissioner said Mi5 kept personal data gathered under warrants, kept it too long and did not store it safely, and that the security service handled large amounts of personal data in an “undoubtedly unlawful” way.

Civil rights group Liberty said the breaches involved the “mass collection of data of innocent citizens”.

The high court heard MI5 knew about the issues in 2016 but kept them secret.

“MI5 have been holding on to people’s data – ordinary people’s data, your data, my data – illegally for many years,” said Megan Goulding, a lawyer for Liberty, which brought the case.

“Not only that, they’ve been trying to keep their really serious errors secret – secret from the security services watchdog, who’s supposed to know about them, secret from the Home Office, secret from the prime minister and secret from the public.”

Read more on the BBC.

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