British crime agency boss says the public have to accept further sacrifice to their digital freedom in order to obtain more safety from terrorists and serious criminals.
Director General of the National Crime Agency (NCA) Keith Bristow made the comments during an interview with The Guardian published on Monday.
Bristow warned that public safety’s biggest threats are moving online and that crime fighters are struggling to keep up.
“What we have needs to be modernized … we are losing capability and coverage of serious criminals,” he said.
The NCA boss also said that the state must be granted greater access to the public communications data, although this must be reached with the people’s permission.
“If we seek to operate outside of what the public consent to, that, for me, by definition, is not policing by consent … the consent is expressed through legislation,” he said, adding it was necessary to gain, “the public consent to losing some freedoms in return for greater safety and security.”
Bristow went on to say that national security and even Britain’s way of life were under the direct threat of cybercrime.
British Home Secretary Theresa May recently vowed that the British Conservative party would implement a bill that had been blocked by the Liberal Democrats for violation of civil liberties. The communications data bill, dubbed the “snoopers’ charter” will grant the government mass surveillance powers.
The NCA is the UK’s lead agency against cyber crime, drug trafficking, economic crime and human trafficking and became fully operational on October 7, 2013
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