UK: Whistleblowers to face lifetime sentences?

Here we go, again. More totalitarian gestures from the British Government.

The Guardian reports…

Government plans that mean computer users deemed to have damaged national security, human welfare, the economy or the environment will face a life sentence have been criticised by experts who warn that the new law could be used to target legitimate whistleblowers.

Politicians claim that this is all about cyberterrorism. But it is obvious that such a legal framework easily can be used against whistleblowers.

And–as usual–it’s all about how you define things.

What is “national security” anyway? It can be almost anything. “Human welfare” is a very broad description. Computer users “damaging” the economy or the environment? (Sounds more like something the Government is doing.)

And notice the word “deemed”.

Well, the definition will be made by… the Government. How convenient.

UK politicians are just about to give themselves yet another legal tool that can be used to curb opposition. This is becoming a pattern.

I cannot understand how they are thinking. OK, politicians see themselves as fair and decent people. That might go for the bureaucracy as well. But you know nothing about how things will be tomorrow. And politics is a volatile business.

To put it in simple words: Never create legal tools that you wouldn’t be prepared to trust in the hands of your worst enemy.

The Guardian: Computer users who damage national security could face jail »


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