Archive for June 3rd, 2008

A Lock-Box Too Far

From the United Kingdom comes this unbelievable story of peoples’ safe-deposit boxes being seized by police en masse – all on the belief that some of them “could” contain absurdly staggering amounts of drugs, weapons, or (presumably ill-gotten) money. Never mind the innocent folks – “Members of the public who have innocently and legally stored their valuables were “inevitablyâ€? going to get swept up in the disruption, it was predicted. Police said they could use a freephone number – 0800 030 4613 – to claim back their goods.” The gods alone know how long that procedure could take – to say nothing of what here in the U.S. would probably be considered an unlawful invasion of privacy. Heaven forbid you were, say, a legal and legitimate small business storing customer data in one of those safe deposit boxes; the Metropolitan Police, Scotland Yard, and probably the security services as well now have access to it – despite any evidence whatsoever of wrongdoing on your part.

Aside from being an appalling invasion of privacy, and a remarkable example of “presumed guilty until proven innocent”, this huge operation – which began as a money laundering investigation – seems like the mother of all “fishing expeditions” to me. I really can’t believe this whole thing isn’t getting more coverage, in the UK and abroad; the implications – and ramifications – of this “Operation Rize” are astounding

Published in: General, Security | on June 3rd, 2008 | No Comments »