Once signed, the warrant can apply to an entire organisation (for example, a trade union) or an individual and all their social and business contacts. Thus one warrant could easily involve the tapping of several hundred separate lines. The system gives MI5 a free hand to tap who they like.
In 1992, 843 warrants were issued, but some 35,000 lines tapped. The Interception Commissioner says he is not concerned at this number, but refuses to say what total would concern him and what he could do about it.
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