Search and Seizure

U.K. Coalition Splits Over Internet Spying

Lib Dems say, "no," but the Conservatives say, "yes."


Nick Clegg has gone to war with David Cameron and Theresa May over controversial Government plans for a "snoopers' charter" allowing the police and security services access to records of individuals' internet use.

Mr Clegg, the Deputy Prime Minister, appeared to put a stop to the Tory proposals during his weekly Call Clegg programme on LBC Radio, saying they are "not going to happen".

Mr Cameron's official spokesman insisted that discussions about the plans are still "ongoing", however senior Lib Dems said that Mr Clegg had "killed" the proposals.

It comes after Charles Farr, the Government's anti-terror chief, warned that new legislation is needed to "level the playing field" with terrorists who are taking advantage of technological advantages.

Under the Government's plans telecoms and internet service providers would be paid taxpayers' money to log their customers' emails, internet use and other correspondence in a way that could be easily searched by pubic officials.