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Information Commissioner investigates legality of police's retention of mobile phone data

Christopher Graham, the Information Commissioner, has told a parliamentary committee that his office is investigating whether police forces are breaching data protection laws by retaining data downloaded from suspects' mobile telephones.

It is understood that a number of police forces are routinely extracting mobile phone data in police stations from suspects. Data downloaded can include call history, text messages, contacts, photos, emails, GPs/browsing history and information from apps.

Under the Data Protection Act 1998 data should not be retained for longer than is necessary.  Civil liberties groups are concerned that data may be being retained indefinitely even where an individual is acquitted or not charged.   In 2008 the ECHR ruled the retention of DNA records for individuals not convicted was unlawful.

 source: The sunday Times


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