Trading Standards chiefs slam further attacks on RIPA
The chief executive of TSI Ron Gainsford, the chairman of ACTSO Guy Pratt and and the chairman of NTSB David Collinson have issued the following joint statement in response to the Big Brother Watch surveillance report:
“Trading Standards services within local authorities need access to communications data as a part of their essential work in protecting local communities and legitimate businesses.
“The Protection of Freedoms Act has now made it a legal obligation for local authorities to obtain an authorisation from a Magistrates Court to take action under RIPA.
“This provision is an added burden on courts and trading standards alike, and is a victory to sensationalised and distorted media coverage, which has highlighted errors of judgement of the few at the expense of the vast body of evidence that shows RIPA being used in a proportionate and effective way for the good of consumers and honest business.
“Terminology such as the “snoopers charter” has been extremely unhelpful and misleading, but we’d hope with the new Protection of Freedoms Act now in place the RIPA witch hunt could be laid to rest. Trading Standards up and down the country will continue to do their utmost in increasingly challenging conditions to serve their communities, keeping us all safe and healthy in ways that many don’t even realise.”
The Trading Standards Institute has also issued a press release calling for an end to the blanket criticism levelled at local government which fails to acknowledge the essential part played by trading standards and other local authority public protection services in supporting and protecting people, communities and good business.