For decades, few people knew how the British Intelligence services worked. How did one even become a spy? Did it really involve a tap on the shoulder and a discreet conversation about Northern Ireland or the Soviet Union?
Now that every aspect of our day to day lives is conducted online, our homes and cars are connected to the internet and data is the very life blood of society, it's no longer a case of nothing to hide nothing to fear.
New legislation may still conflict with certain individual freedoms. But If intelligence gathering procedures are strengthened then they may prevent an attack like the one we saw in Paris this weekend. This may keep hundreds of people alive. What greater freedom is there than that?
We must have answers. Indiscriminate mass surveillance has an impact that reaches far beyond Amnesty. It threatens the vital work of other organisations and it impacts you. Yes, you! In accepting your government encroaching into your private communications you risk sleepwalking into a surveillance culture.
Protest is increasingly going digital. Whether it is using the internet to organise and report physical acts of protest, using online space as a platform on which to take action, or targeting online infrastructure itself: across the world, people are taking their right to protest online.
The starting place for any democratic decisions about how we balance our rights to freedom against the need to compromise that freedom for the safety and security of the wider community should be that we should be free to do anything we want except if there is a compelling case why we should not.
It is highly unlikely that the people charged with supervising our security services have any idea how algorithmic surveillance works. It is also highly unlikely that the people at GCHQ are going to enlighten them.
The Internet is a vast place. Bigger than anyone, except a computer scientist, can imagine. It's a massive iceberg. What we see via Google and any other search engine is called the Clearnet and is potentially less than two per cent of what's actually out there, buried deep down in the Darknet or Deep Web.
The 'Thought For The Day' slot is often (not always) given to religious professionals of various types. Or at least there seem to be a majority of speakers from the various faiths. Other people's thoughts are not seen as valuable or moral perhaps?
We all need somebody to blame. This week, Facebook, Twitter and other social media sites were yet again in the firing line for becoming "the command and control networks of choice" for jihadi brainwashers.
Reprieve recently filed a complaint with the UK government regarding BT's role in facilitating surveillance that leads to killing. BT has persistently refused to come clean on its collaboration with intelligence agencies. We can only hope that the UK government can get from BT the answers we deserve.
Call me a whistleblowing geek - but I keep a poster of Daniel Ellsberg on the board above my desk. I'm an independent freelance journalist, and in t...
As we all know, Turing was driven to suicide while the rest of his cohort at Bletchley Park languished in silence, prevented by a paranoid establishment from disclosing their part in the war effort. The better part of fifty years passed before we were allowed to understand the depth and breadth of their achievement...
It is very difficult to interrogate the legality of a programme of surveillance, when the people having done it, refuse to acknowledge it happened. The UK programme, called 'TEMPORA' has been a bone of contention since the start of these proceedings. GCHQ refuses to acknowledge that it exists, despite tacitly acknowledging it exists, by defending the legal basis for its existence.
And so their watch continues. Last week's news confirmed what we already knew, courtesy of Edward Snowden - that UK intelligence services have been intercepting our private messages on email and social media networks, supposedly with the backing of the law and in the name of national defence...
On this anniversary, I want to salute the bravery of Edward Snowden. His conscious courage has given us all a fighting chance against a corporate-industrial-intelligence complex that is running amok across the world. I hope that we can all find within us an answering courage to do what is right and indeed take back our rights. His bravery and sacrifice must not be in vain.