Here’s a Disturbing List of Who Will Soon Be Able to View Your Internet Browsing History

The UK government has now passed the Investigatory Powers Bill, more commonly referred to as the Snooper’s Charter as a result of it being as about as intrusive as prime minister Theresa May rifling through your sock drawer, and it’s not hyperbolic to suggest that this is a Very Bad Thing. The Snooper’s Charter will effectively allow the government to more adequately spy on its citizens, with it placing the security of your entire Internet browsing history at risk in the process.

Among the new bill’s requirements is an internet connection record, which will force your Internet Service Provider (ISP) to keep a log of all of the websites you have visited and pass them over to the government in bulk when they are requested to do so. This means that this data will now remain stored by your ISPs, ready for the government to perform background checks whenever they see fit to do so, while also being dangled like a carrot in front of hackers who could potentially access these logs and use it to blackmail just about anyone.

Also See: UK Porn Ban to Include “Non-Conventional” Sex Acts Like Spanking and Female Ejaculation

But if you think that the safety of your online browsing history is being left solely in the hands of the government and your ISP, then think again. A list of who will have access to your internet records is outlined in Schedule 4 of the Act, with it containing a whopping 48 organisations that will be allowed to effectively spy on you. Here they are in full:

  • Metropolitan police force
  • City of London police force
  • Police forces maintained under section 2 of the Police Act 1996
  • Police Service of Scotland
  • Police Service of Northern Ireland
  • British Transport Police
  • Ministry of Defence Police
  • Royal Navy Police
  • Royal Military Police
  • Royal Air Force Police
  • Security Service
  • Secret Intelligence Service
  • GCHQ
  • Ministry of Defence
  • Department of Health
  • Home Office
  • Ministry of Justice
  • National Crime Agency
  • HM Revenue & Customs
  • Department for Transport
  • Department for Work and Pensions
  • NHS trusts and foundation trusts in England that provide ambulance services
  • Common Services Agency for the Scottish Health Service
  • Competition and Markets Authority
  • Criminal Cases Review Commission
  • Department for Communities in Northern Ireland
  • Department for the Economy in Northern Ireland
  • Department of Justice in Northern Ireland
  • Financial Conduct Authority
  • Fire and rescue authorities under the Fire and Rescue Services Act 2004
  • Food Standards Agency
  • Food Standards Scotland
  • Gambling Commission
  • Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority
  • Health and Safety Executive
  • Independent Police Complaints Commissioner
  • Information Commissioner
  • NHS Business Services Authority
  • Northern Ireland Ambulance Service Health and Social Care Trust
  • Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service Board
  • Northern Ireland Health and Social Care Regional Business Services Organisation
  • Office of Communications
  • Office of the Police Ombudsman for Northern Ireland
  • Police Investigations and Review Commissioner
  • Scottish Ambulance Service Board
  • Scottish Criminal Cases Review Commission
  • Serious Fraud Office
  • Welsh Ambulance Services National Health Service Trust

Yes, the government are proposing that the likes of the Food Standards Agency and the Gambling Commission should have access to your browsing history. Yes, this is reality.

The tremendous length of this list also means that your online security will be placed at an even greater risk, with the Act entrusting them to keep any data they gain access to safe from hackers. This ensures that not only are you reliant upon your ISP and the government to employ security measures strong enough to prevent cyber attacks, but you’ll also now reliant upon the likes of the HM Revenue & Customs and the NHS to do so, too.

The bill has already been passed by the government, so it’s very likely that it will be enforced in the near future. However, citizens can sign a parliamentary petition that, if it reaches 100,000 signatures, will see the Act being debated in government.

Image Credit: artpartner-images / Getty Images

(H/T: Yiu)