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Tim Berners-Lee Condemns Spy Agencies

8th November 2013

Inventor of the World Wide Web and keynote speaker, Tim Berners-Lee has spoken out about encryption cracking by British and US spy agencies calling it ‘appalling and foolish’.

Tim was brought in to assess the ways in which MI5, MI6 AND GCHQ had been using mass surveillance programmes, which has resulted in ‘weakened online security by cracking the online encryption on which hundreds of millions of users rely to guard data privacy.’

Tim feels very strongly about the agencies lack of conduct and has called for a public debate on the subject of internet surveillance by National Security Agency and the GCHQ, as they have failed to oversee how spy agencies have been using internet surveillance programmes.

The heads of MI5, MI6 and GCHQ will go before parliament’s intelligence and security committee at a hearing held in Westminster. The agencies internet misconduct was exposed by the guardian and Tim stated ‘It seems clear that the Guardian's reporting around the scale and scope of state surveillance has been in the public interest and has uncovered many important issues which now need a full and frank public debate.’

Tim noted that the other problem with internet spying is that the public lose confidence in internet and no longer see it as somewhere they can search freely and keep private information. Tim also stated that ‘Any democratic country has to take the high road; it has to live by its principles. I'm very sympathetic to attempts to increase security against organised crime, but you have to distinguish yourself from the criminal.’

This year, Tim will be celebrating the 25th Anniversary of the World Wide Web.

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