Party Blog

Leaked document reveals secret government plan to disrupt encryption

On May 4th, 2017, the Open Rights group released a document detailing government plans to install backdoors enabling them to intercept real-time communications of up to 10,000 people.

By doing so Amber Rudd’s plan to ban end to end encryption will come to reality. This will not only force any company with more than 10,000 users to let government organisations view in real time the communications of any of their users, but by doing so will enable any hacker in the world with the codes to access the "hand-over point", but it gets worse. This hand-over point is chosen by the warrant issuer to ensure real-time access, that will mean that potentially insecure nodes will be used to pass messages onto agents, nodes that can easily be hacked.

While the Pirate Party UK sees the value of reading the messages of suspected criminals, doing so at the almost certain cost of sharing user messages to anyone in the world. This is yet another example of how government ministers misunderstanding basic principles of IT and jumping to solutions, then pushing these proposals through in secret

Jerry Fishenden resigns from Co-chair of the PCAG

Jerry Fishenden, one of the UK's leaders in the world of technology, has resigned from his position as co-chair of the PCAG (Privacy Consumer Advice Group) (Fishenden 2017).

The PCAG was founded in 2006 to ensure that legislation is reasonable and achievable for tech companies before it is debated by MPs. According to the government, the PCAG aims to ensure:

  • Users are in control of their information
  • Information isn’t centralised
  • Users have a choice of who provides services on their behalf

On his blog, (Fishenden 2017) Fishenden states how over recent years his group has been increasingly ignored. He specifically points out part five of the Digital Economy Act which weakens citizens control of their data and makes it easier for public authorities and other organisations to share it (Say, 2017).

Fishenden also makes comment on how he and his group have written multiple letters to the MCO (Minster for the Cabinet Offices). However, since Francis Maude’s departure from the Position, the group has had less and less support.

No duty is more urgent than that of returning thanks

David Elston's picture

It’s often tempting to find a flaw in the opposition’s campaign and exploit it. When it comes to party policy, it’s our duty and job to certainly point out the problems and more importantly, offer an alternative.

...but sometimes without a particularly good reason, campaigns can turn sour and personal. I’m really glad we haven’t seen this here, in St Athan. I’ve been careful to run a positive campaign and my only criticisms about other parties were factual or empirical. The candidates themselves are all local campaigners and while we may not agree – there is simply nothing to gain by making things personal, getting nasty and over all a little respect can go a long way.

There’s nothing particularly easy about running a local election campaign. You may struggle between your own ideals and the evidence, it takes a lot of energy to make sure your message is received in the way it is intended and least of all your feet definitely get sore from all that walking.

Tomorrow is not another day, tomorrow is the day.

David Elston's picture

We have made a strong case in the local elections this year. Candidates running up and down their communities dropping leaflets and speaking to neighbours all while making a few new friends.

Some we have met have been completely unsure on who to vote for, others know they want a definite change but don't know who to trust. One thing remains clear, that an independently minded Pirate providing a positive alternative is needed more than ever.

Tomorrow your votes will decide how strong a mandate we will have in the communities we feel most connected. Tomorrow your voice can be heard and all it takes is one stubby pencil.

Issues ranging from education budgets, to public access to knowledge in libraries, allowing social development in areas of play and keeping our communities safe from anti-social behaviour and dangerous roads have been brought up online, on the door step and in the street.

Pirates build their policies from the ground up. You decide what the priorities are and we represent that to the council, not a top-down, predetermined policy set that doesn't really sit right with you.

Castleland Man With Burning Ambition

Jeb Hedges's picture

Many people in the Vale of Glamorgan are up in arms about the incinerator being built in the heart of Barry. They believe it is a potential health and safety hazard for the local community, and that a license to operate the incinerator must not be granted.

Local man Jebediah Hedges feels so strongly about the incinerator that he is making it a central part of his campaign for election to the Vale of Glamorgan Council in the Castleland ward, where he is standing as a candidate for the Pirate Party UK.

"This is something much more than a community heating project. Those schemes are popular in countries like Austria, where they are used for heating and generating electricity for small towns of a few hundred homes. This plant, however, is being constructed on an industrial level.

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