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As someone in an Authority that does use RIPA (mainly directed but occasionally CHIS) it is extermely frustrating to know that this focus on public authorities was simply the result of the government scoring cheap points with th e public on the back of a couple of local authorities that used RIPA incorrectly.

It obviously didn't help that the media pushed RIPA to the public by basically saying 'your council thinks you're a terrorist'.

It didn't need a change in legislation to resolve the issue. All it needed was for the Surveillance Commissioner to be a bit more rigorous in its inspection regime.

This may not have a massive impact on privacy compared to the ongoing thousands of applications that are made by other bodies but it will certainly have a negative impact on our ability to pursue violent loan sharks, dangerous fake goods sellers and prolific fly-tippers.

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