Telephone tapping at record level

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The Independent Online
The number of telephone taps and mail interceptions carried out by the police, M15, M16 and Customs has increased by more than 20 per cent in the past year to an all-time high, it was revealed yesterday. One of the main reasons for the large increase was the growing use of interception warrants by smaller police forces, as well as an upsurge in action against IRA suspects.

The Annual Report of the Interception of Communications Commissioner revealed that the number of warrants rose from 1,135 in Britain in 1995 to 1,370 last year. This is biggest total since the Interception of Communications Act came into force in 1985.

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