October 26, 2022Counter-Terrorism Prevent Surveillance Closing of civic space
Today, Rights & Security International (RSI) launches a new report analysing the UK’s collection and sharing of personal data under the 'Prevent' counter-extremism programme, and concludes that these practices are illegal under the European Convention on Human Rights. The report, Secret, confused and illegal - How the UK handles personal data under Prevent, concludes that the UK’s handling of personal data under inconsistent, vague and often secret policies, and a lack of proven necessity for these activities, violate the human right to respect for private life found in Article 8 of the Convention, which is binding on the UK. Privacy rights are not only enforceable human rights by themselves, but are also a crucial 'gateway' for other rights such as free expression and freedom of religion.
The essential rights and freedoms of people in Great Britain and Northern Ireland remain in force even when the government says it is protecting national security. The use of the secretive Prevent programme, including to share data with police and (potentially) immigration authorities and intelligence agencies, continues to marginalise communities and censor individuals. At minimum, the UK public should not be subjected to a lawless programme, and instead should be given a clear understanding of how, why and for how long personal data can be stored and shared -- and what evidence the government has that these practices are truly the most effective tool for preventing violence. Read more in our report, available here (link will be provided).
For more information contact:
Migration, Citizenship and Communications Officer
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