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Thursday, March 24, 2016

British Government Catalogs Gun Owners With Terrorists In Surveillance Database

The British government has compiled a national database cataloguing not only known terrorists but also “every single person in the U.K. with access to firearms,” according to the UK Shooting News website

The Draft Investigatory Powers Bill, nicknamed “the Snoopers’ Charter”—much of which went online even before Parliament examined it—institutionalizes mass surveillance, with particular attention aimed at gun owners and shooting club members. “To help manage the risk of U.K. based subjects of interest accessing firearms ... the security and intelligence agencies acquired the details of all these individuals,” including names, addresses, telephone numbers and more, and compiled it into its database, according to the 300-page bill (and reportedly partial law).

As UK Shooting News notes, this registry represents “an instant target for hackers working with organized crime, terrorists or even foreign state actors. The very fact that it exists makes every member of the licensed firearms community less safe.”