All commercial and individual operators in this field would be obliged by law to cooperate upon receipt of a warrant personally signed by the Home Secretary (interior minister). To its supporters, such a proposal is a pragmatic response to the advance of new technology which has left existing legislation increasingly irrelevant. To its opponents, the measure is little more than a sweeping 'snooper's charter' allowing the state to use the possibility of terrorism to conduct 'fishing expeditions' which constitute a substantial abuse of fundamental civil liberties.
- If implemented, the proposed legislation would set an international precedent and complicate the activities of commercial operators.
- It would only be legislated for in this form if Cameron and the Conservative Party secure or come close to an overall majority.
- The Liberal Democrats, which maintain their opposition to a 'snooper's charter', face a wipe-out in the general election.