LONDON – British lawmakers are debating the balance between privacy and security during an unusual one-day session designed to rush an online surveillance bill through parliament.
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Government and opposition legislators in the House of Commons on Tuesday condemned the Data Retention and Investigatory Powers Bill, which requires phone and Internet companies to store call and search records for a year.
Home Secretary Theresa May says the data is "vital in the fight against crime and the fight against terrorists."
But Conservative lawmaker Dominic Raab called the bill a "piece of clumsy surveillance legislation."
Despite the critics, the bill is backed by the three main party leaders and is almost certain to become law. It is expected to clear the House of Commons later Tuesday before going to the House of Lords.