why IMP if all about comms data ? (was Re: s

Caspar Bowden (travelling) tharg at gmx.net
Tue Jun 19 12:48:31 BST 2012

FYI - I attended (representing no-one) a meeting with home office 
officials about IMP (as it then was) about 3 years ago, when I asked 
"why is it called the Interception Modernisation Program if it's all 
about communications data?". The only response was a sideways look 
between officials and something about a legacy of terminology.

About a year later in a speech Tarpaulin Neville-Jones asserted that IMP 
would not be "alternating the boundaries between traffic and content". 
When I put it to her that the boundaries were already quite unclear (in 
RIPA), she just gave a mandarin smile.

It seems clear that the RIPA definitions (almost unchanged in CDB) must 
be able to be construed at different logical levels of the stack (how 
else could they apply to e-mail entities and not just datagram fields?)

So logically either
a) the people who dreamed up IMP didn't know that (i.e. engineers not 
b) the original intended scope _was_ about interception
c) it was recognized that getting at certain stack levels would entail 

Anyone any info on why it was called IMP originally?


On 19/06/12 12:17, Chris Edwards wrote:
> enforcement beyond RIPA.
> Maybe there's a clue in the changes of name from "Intercept Modernisation
> Programme" to "Communications Data Bill".  They're deeming this stuff to
> be comms data, and hence lawful.

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