Parliament to consider snooping Bills

Staff Writer
By Staff Writer, ITWeb
Johannesburg, 22 Jul 2008

The Parliamentary Ad Hoc Committee on Intelligence will next Wednesday hold public hearings on the Intelligence Services Amendment Bill and the National Strategic Intelligence Amendment Bill that will, among other objectives, beef up the state's ability to bug the public.

The two Bills insert new definitions into existing intelligence-related laws, but also set out to create the National Communications Centre (NCC), currently an espionage unit within the National Intelligence Agency, as a separate agency.

Ministry of Intelligence legal advisor Kerensa Millard recently told Parliament 500 posts had been approved for the NCC and 300 of these were filled.

The NCC has been described as a "state-of-the-art communications monitoring section" that conducts signal and data interception - including that of cellphone calls and e-mail - in terms of the Regulation of Interception of Communications and Provision of Communication-Related Information Act.

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