Decision - Surveillance Policy
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Decision Maker: Cabinet
Decision status: Recommendations Approved
Is Key decision?: No
Is subject to call in?: Yes
(1) That Cabinet approves the continued use of covert surveillance and the accessing of communications data as an enforcement tool to prevent and detect all crime and disorder investigated by its officers, providing the necessity and proportionality rules are stringently applied.
(2) That Cabinet notes the surveillance activity undertaken by the authority since the last report to Cabinet in March 2011 as set out in Appendix 1.
(3) That the Cabinet notes the outcome of the internal review and approves the implementation of the proposed changes with immediate effect.
Reasons for the decision:
It is essential that officers are able to use the RIPA powers where necessary within the new threshold, but only after exhausting all other methods of enforcement. An authorisation should now be given by a Director and above, and scrutinised by a ‘gatekeeper’, therefore, it is unlikely that these powers will be abused.
The implementation of the Annual Review and quarterly oversight has made the whole process transparent and demonstrates to the public that the correct procedures are followed.
Alternative options considered:
A review of ‘surveillance activities’ could be the subject of the normal scrutiny process.
Report author: John Peerless
Publication date: 09/06/2011
Date of decision: 09/06/2011
Decided at meeting: 09/06/2011 - Cabinet
Effective from: 17/06/2011