HC Deb 07 March 2000 vol 345 c572W
Mr. Heald

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will make a statement on the number of interceptions of communications on non-public telecommunications networks in 1998 and 1999 by(a) law enforcement agencies and (b) others. [111134]

Mr. Charles Clarke

The statutory framework regulating interception of communications sent by post or by means of public telecommunication systems in the United Kingdom is provided by the Interception of Communications Act 1985. This Act does not extend to non-public telecommunications networks. The Government are legislating, through the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Bill, to extend the law to regulate this kind of interception.

Because current law does not require a warrant to be signed by the Secretary of State in order for interception to be carried out on non-public telecommunications networks, figures for such interceptions are not held centrally.