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Theresa May named internet villain of the year

The Home Secretary, Theresa May, has been named the UK internet industry’s villain of the year for pursuing “snooper’s charter” legislation without fully consulting the sector.

The gong, part of the annual ISPA awards, was given for “forging ahead with communications data legislation that would significantly increase capabilities without adequate consultation with industry and civil society”.

“With an investigatory powers bill due before parliament in the coming months, it is essential that ISPs are consulted,” the Internet Services Providers’ Association (ISPA) added.

The MPs Tom Watson and David Davis were jointly named internet hero for their legal action against the Data Retention and Investigatory Powers Act (DRIPA). “Surveillance has dominated both the hero and villain shortlists for number of years, and it was felt Davis and Watson were some of the best informed politicians on the subject,” the ISPA said.

Also nominated for the Hero award were the Interception of Communications Commissioner (part of the Home Office), Privacy International, GreenNet andDavid Anderson QC, an independent reviewer of terrorism legislation. David Anderson QC.

A special 20th anniversary award was given to John Souter, chief executive of Linx (the London Internet Exchange) for his service to the internet industry.

The ISPA said Linx had been fundamental to the development of the UK’s internet industry by providing a cost-effective platform for ISPs.

Fibre broadband ISP Hyperoptic won three awards, including best superfast broadband for the third consecutive year.

Hosting provider catalyst2 won two awards, including the customer choice honour for the third time. It was the only category decided solely by customer ratings.

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For a full list of winners, visit the ISPA website.


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