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Sweden wants to force ISPs to save user data

TT/David Landes · 15 May 2009, 16:28

Published: 15 May 2009 16:28 GMT+02:00

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The proposal, which is still in its initial stages but was leaked onto the internet and reported on by the Dagens Nyheter (DN) newspaper, is an attempt by the Ministry of Justice to prevent internet providers from diluting a new law meant to make it easier to hunt down people suspected of illegal file sharing.

Under Sweden’s new anti-piracy law, which is based on the EU’s Intellectual Property Rights Enforcement Directive (IPRED) and went into force on April 1st, ISPs can be forced by a court order to release information about users under investigation for possible copyright violations.

But because several internet providers, including Bahnhof and Tele2, continually erase customer data, the companies currently have no data to hand over should they be asked to do so.

As a result of the ISPs’ policies, the efficacy of Sweden’s IPRED-law has been greatly diminished.

In order to rectify the law’s shortcomings, Sweden’s Minister of Justice Beatrice Ask has laid out plans in an unpublished referral to Sweden’s Council on Legislation (Lagrådet) which would force ISPs to save information about their customers for six months.

A spokesperson for the justice minister, Martin Valfridsson, stressed that the proposal isn’t finished yet and that nothing is set in stone.

“There is no referral to the Council on Legislation. The government hasn’t taken a decision about any referral to the Council and until the government has done so, nothing is finished,” he told the TT news agency.

Word of the new proposal prompted the Pirate Party to issue a statement condemning the government’s plans, calling the suggestion a “mass-registration” of communications between individual citizens.

“Storing the data means that the state has a register of all contacts ordinary people have via the internet and the telephone, even though they aren’t suspected of any crime. It violates the constitution and the European Convention on Human Rights,” said Christian Engström, the Pirate Party’s top candidate in the European Parliamentary election, in a statement.

“The internet isn’t a playground where politicians get to do what they want. The constitution applies, even on the internet. We have the right to keep our private lives private,” said Engström.

Story continues below…

Ministry of Justice legal expert Karin Walberg told DN that the government had hoped to present a government bill in June, following a review of the proposal by the Council on Legislation which was expected to be completed within a few weeks.

But the Pirate Party’s Engström theorized that the government had planned to wait until after the June 7th EU-parliament elections to officially release the proposal.

TT/David Landes (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

18:35 May 15, 2009 by zeero
Very simple solution to this to find as much as information as possible on the legislature and to simply follow the rules with them as well...
18:52 May 15, 2009 by eZee.se
Minister of Justice Beatrice Ask = Music and movies industries groupie / wh0re.

Again, just in time to help the pirate party get more people onto their side.

Soon when it comes to the internet, we will be looking to the wonderful freedoms offered in other countries like China.

Welcome to Sweden, where Rape is pretty much O.K... file sharing is a big no-no!
20:16 May 15, 2009 by krow
eZee.se or what do you call yourself. What are you talking about?

Any party that protect my privacy will have my vote.
21:31 May 15, 2009 by eZee.se
@krow, eZee(dot)se is our site name... check it out.

- Any party that protect my privacy will have my vote.

Exactly, thats why vote pirateparty, the others are only too happy to sell you out.
23:08 May 15, 2009 by jsrassat
Sweden needs to focus its attention on other issues, not just the ones that put money into the pockets of corporate/capitalist money grubbing whores.
23:57 May 15, 2009 by bob3000
There you go - the lack of specific direction to ISP's in the FRA/IPRED is now being clarified. Boom boom.

I am so unhappy about having my privacy legislated and it's all because of these feckless gimps and their megaphone attitude about downloading.

Do you have provoke everyone? Can't you just do your business quietly?

If it had not been for the 'do something, if you dare, screw the Man" taunting and plastic veneer socialist/anti-corporate cover for leeching, then I would not have to be concerned about encrypting my private correspondence.

You did this to us, not the government - you forced them into a corner. Congratulations.
00:19 May 16, 2009 by eZee.se
- You did this to us, not the government - you forced them into a corner.

thats just silly, they want total control of all media and distributed the way they want to and a total stop of progress in technology.

there was no avoiding this, if people shouted from the treetops or hid in caves and downloaded it would be the same, and if you think otherwise you are either a dimwit or fooling yourself.
03:40 May 16, 2009 by CJBM
But *can* they store all that giraffe porn?
08:12 May 16, 2009 by Prat
Terrible! The bureaucrats (and Yankee friends) can watch all they wish ... because we might download a song.

Many use internet hours each day, all without illegal acts. Why whole Sweden should be monitored? The companies (and ultimately we sheeple) must bear data storage costs. We're forced to pay for fences & chains to monitor & bind us. They say 'not final decision' for their offensive plan. Government's not properly protecting us - they're hunting & tagging us - we are farmed creatures.
09:48 May 16, 2009 by Jamtjim
If you really want to fight back, collectively we can make this law impossible and uneconomical to enforce.

First encrypt all your email conversations. Yes I know that these can by cracked but if everybody did so, it would tie down so much computer time that it would at least cost any spying b'stards more.

Next whilst you should not file share copyrighted material, (I of course never do as this is illegal) there is nothing illegal about "appearing" to share copyrighted material. Use a VPN and share loads of empty files called "New Starr Trekky film" or "Metallicers greatest hits. By the time the money grabbing gits have investigated you, it will have cost them a fortune only for them to discover that you have doen nothing wrong.
12:58 May 16, 2009 by dtes
yeah i agree with you all actually, ive supported pirate bay all along but at times ive wondered if they werent stirring it up just a bit too much with the attitude but they should have an attitude, at least somebody here in sweden does, the average swede just roll over and takes it in the arrse.

regardless of how i feel though i still say VOTE PIRATE before they ban voting!

and yeah we can and should indeed react to them storing our info, we can and should use encryption, its about that time anyway. i mean think about it, they have been going through our communications for years anyways, you should all be acting like your being spied on as is cuz YOU ARE! and they are much more ingenious than they let on so you really should put your thinking cap on for this one and come up with a sollution that works for you, if each and every person does the same then their laws will be rendered useless, and that there is a fact that applies to everything every aspect of government!
13:24 May 16, 2009 by Random Guy

it is so nice to see all you swed's and their leaders just rolling over for the big corp guys here in the usa.

next we will make you fetch, play dead and so on....

now do as we say or we will hit your little swedish nose with a wet paper!

19:05 May 16, 2009 by RoyceD
i wonder how long it will take before those around the world realize that knowledge and information will never be able to be controlled they way the oligarch's are use to. The end of class system is beginning.
21:53 May 16, 2009 by BrittInSweden
I still don't get how people think they have a right to get media for free in this country. You do realise a company somewhere put time and money into creating that, they have rights too.

Saving information at ISP level doesnt mean someone somewhere cares what you are sending your friends in emails so all this "encrypt your communication" stuff is pointless.

bob3000 has it spot on, if people didn't have the "its my right" (which it isn't) and "stick it to the man" attitude regarding piracy then its likely a decision like this would have come around, be lucky you don't have capped download limits like the UK ISPs put in place.
23:06 May 16, 2009 by Keithy
I think the 'stick it to the man' attitude comes from the fact that people remember when the media companies were holding people to ransom over the cost of CDs and DVDs. When the boot is on the other foot there tends to be a bit of triumphalism about it, for better or worse. If this law really does succeed in stopping downloads then you just watch what happens to the prices in the shops again. I doubt you'll be trumpeting about the rights of the big companies then.

BTW, if you have a capped download limit then it's because you're tight, or skint. Cough up a bit more and you'll be able to download as much as you want.
23:46 May 16, 2009 by bob3000
I've said all I'm going to on this - it is like talking to a brickwall. I see it is not a black and white situation.

@eZee perhaps when you have a few more years behind you and you are perhaps making something creative that involves a talent - perhaps even working a job, rather than just sitting downloading - You may just realise that your sense of self-entitlement is a little selfish and misplaced.

There is nothing like the certainty and arrogance of youth - just remember, we all need to work together, not just look out for no.1
00:07 May 17, 2009 by Kind Man
I dont understand why Sweden is trying to act like these two Cow-Boys Britian /USA?

Or Sweden has plan to attack countries for its resources like These two big cow boys? before UK was going everywhere, Now USA is going everywhere to get the control. Ofcourse by supporting the isreali terrorist they became also terrorists and they would have enemies.

But why Sweden? these big terrorist scaring small countries coz they want to use them. If anything happen to these small european countries I would first investage if there is not US/UK/Jews hands behind this than I would look for another terrorist. coz the cow-boys are good player for fooling people.
18:23 May 17, 2009 by DamnImmigrant
The idea behind the 6 month storage is so that LAW ENFORCEMENT can track down terrorists and criminals like organized crime and pedophiles.

As I understand the IPRED, a court order for the ISP's records is issued through a CIVIL proceedings and NOT through law enforcement?

So how about making the "6 month record holding law" work for LAW ENFORCEMENT ONLY. In other words, the records could ONLY be handed over to the police (law enforcement) in the course of conducting an investigation!

This way if someone wanted to query the ISP's records, they would have to ask the police to OPEN AN INVESTIGATION. The police are already overloaded with investigations and so they would naturally go after only the really big violators of the downloading instead of going after all of the little guys.

Do I understand this correctly?
19:31 May 17, 2009 by Jamtjim
Brittin Sweden i think you are missing the point. To file share copyrighted material is illegal and i can understand the arguements for better protection of copyright holders.

What i object to is the hypocracy of the industry which labels file sharers as immoral whilst acting in a totally immoral way themselves.

In addition, a law which allows people to spy on you is a step towards the big brother culture we are all conserned about (and rightly so). If you step back and allow your civil liberties to be eroded simply so that rich people can get even richer then you deserve everything you get. If you bury your head in the sand, you cant really be suprised when someone comes along and f*#ks you up the a"#se.

Im not advocating file sharing, what i am advocating doing is turning an unfair law against the corrupt organisations who lobbied for it. Yes I know that encrypted emails have not effect when it comes to file sharing. Who it would effect is anyone you intercepts your communication (especially when being sent over country bourdries).

Myself I have nothing to hide. I and not sharing films or music, am not arranging drug deals or terrorist attrocities nor am I bonking my secretary. What i am hoping for is a type of civil disobedience where we make it as hard as possible for legalised spying to function ecconomically.

As for download capping, this is a commersial decision as the IP's cannot supply the service they advertise if everyone dowloaded at full speed all the time. As far as i am aware it has nothing to do with the law.
19:36 May 17, 2009 by Jamtjim
I wonder Kind Man. Is there any problem in the world which is not the fault of the US, UK or as you put it, Jews?
23:01 May 17, 2009 by Kind Man
They are the source of Problem and creating Problems. they are machines of terrorists.

before you could find one alqueda member hardly in the world and now everyday like 200 of their members dies in fighting and day by day they get more powerful. So UK/USA/Jews are terrorist generator like some Keygen if you use for software cracking LOL
23:06 May 17, 2009 by Jamtjim
Wacko alert... Wacko alert...

Kind Man... you need to get some help mate. Cuckoo
00:16 May 18, 2009 by Markbase with an Invisible Q
Kind Man, not only are your comments completely irrelevant to this thread (which is not necessarily a bad thing), but they are also extremely offensive and anti-semitic (which is a bad thing).

I'm not Jewish, but if I were, I would be strongly offended by this rubbish.

How can you call yourself "Kind Man" when you write with such prejudiced hatred?
11:40 May 18, 2009 by Jamtjim
Dispite my own personal opinions about our beloved Kind Man I do not think he should be banned. My belief is that by letting him exercise is right to free speech (something I feel he may want to deny other people) all he does is expose himself as the uninteligent, hate-filled, jealous, rasist bigot he amost certainly is. He does more to harm his credabliity in one sentence than I could achieve in a whole essay.

Well done Kind Man, you must be so proud of yourself.
12:37 May 18, 2009 by Markbase with an Invisible Q
Expect a YouTube link in retaliation to your comment, Jamtjim.
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