Britain's Home Secretary Theresa May arrives for a cabinet meeting at Number 10 Downing Street in London, Britain June 9, 2015. REUTERS/Toby Melville
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Britain's terrorism law watchdog said Thursday the legal framework underpinning security services' ability to spy on the public's communications was fragmented, undemocratic and "in the long run intolerable".David Anderson, Britain's independent reviewer of anti-terrorism laws, said the framework overseeing the interception of emails, phone calls and online activity by police and spies needed a major overhaul, and that the government needed to spell out why the authorities were pressing for even more powers.However, he said that while it should not be easy for the state to access communications, the intelligence agencies should be able to carry out the bulk interception of data."Each intrusive power must be shown to be necessary, clearly spelled out in law, limited in accordance with international human rights standards and subject to demanding and visible safeguards," Anderson said in a 373-page report for Prime Minister David Cameron.A debate about how to protect privacy while ensuring the security agencies have the powers they need has raged since former U.S. intelligence contractor Edward Snowden leaked details about mass surveillance by British and U.S spies.
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