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Technology / Cybersecurity

UK denies Prism spying claims

UK foreign secretary William Hague has denied claims that the intelligence agency Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) violated the law over US Internet monitoring programme, Prism.

Hague told the BBC, "The idea that in GCHQ people are sitting working out how to circumvent a UK law with another agency in another country is fanciful. It is nonsense."

GCHQ will submit a report to the UK Intelligence and Security Committee (ISC) on data obtained by it through Prism.

The Guardian reported that GCHQ had generated 197 intelligence reports from the National Security Agency (NSA) run Prism programme in 2012.

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According to the news agency, the Prism programme appeared to allow GCHQ to bypass formal legal processes required to obtain personal material, such as emails, photographs and videos, from world’s largest internet firms.

ISC chairman Malcolm Rifkind said the committee is aware of the allegations surrounding data obtained by GCHQ through the US Prism programme.

"The ISC will be receiving a full report from GCHQ very shortly and will decide what further action needs to be taken as soon as it receives that information," Rifkind said.

Prism is reported to have been in operation since 2007 and reportedly involves major tech firms such as Microsoft, Google, Facebook, Yahoo, Apple and others, though many of them have denied their involvement.


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CBR Staff Writer

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