Starmer dumps doormat?

Wendy M. Grossman wendyg at
Sat Jan 15 16:43:39 GMT 2011

I see. Thanks.

It's amazing how apparently simple things become quite complex when you 
need to pin them down as specifically as writing a law requires.


On 1/15/2011 16:40, Caspar Bowden (travelling private e-mail) wrote:
> Yates said the following (at Q5):  Hacking is defined in a very prescriptive
> way by the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act and it's very, very
> prescriptive and it's very difficult to prove.... There are very few
> offences that we are able to actually prove that have been hacked. That is,
> intercepting the voicemail prior to the owner of that voicemail intercepting
> it him or herself.
> The supposition is that Yates was thinking of
> tory-powers-bill<<<1438 Bassam: ...The definition of "interception" is
> limited to interception of a communication in the course of its transmission
> by certain means. To take one example, a letter which has been delivered
> through a letterbox and is lying on a doormat is no longer in the course of
> its transmission-it has, after all, arrived>>>
> erception
> Addressing the home affairs select committee today John Yates, the assistant
> Metropolitan police commissioner, repeated earlier claims by police that
> cases of hacking into voicemails could only be prosecuted if the victim had
> not yet listened to their messages. "That is nonsense, and a recurring
> problem with this police position in this case," said Simon McKay, author of
> Covert Policing Law&  Practice. "The police are getting confused about a
> number of things relating to the evidential status of a voicemail....
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Wendy M. Grossman [mailto:wendyg at]
> Sent: 15 January 2011 15:52
> To: cb at; UK Cryptography Policy Discussion Group
> Cc: Caspar Bowden (travelling private e-mail)
> Subject: Re: Starmer dumps doormat?
> Why should whether you've heard the messages or not make any difference?
> wg
> On 1/15/2011 10:17, Caspar Bowden (travelling private e-mail) wrote:
>> e-hacking
>> The CPS had been of the view that an offence of phone hacking would
>> require it to be proved that someone had hacked a phone and listened
>> to a message before the owner of the phone had a chance to hear it.
>> Now the CPS believes an offence may have been committed if a phone was
>> hacked and a message listened to by a journalist or private
>> investigator at any time, even if the owner had already heard it

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