Investigatory Powers Commissioner Lord Justice Fulford establishes oversight regime

Lord Justice Adrian Fulford

Lord Justice Adrian Fulford

Friday 1 September witnessed Lord Justice Adrian Fulford begin a new role in overseeing the use of investigatory powers by the police service, law enforcement and the intelligence agencies. This marks a major milestone in establishing the powerful oversight regime set out in the Investigatory Powers Act, which was granted Royal Assent last year.

The role replaces the oversight roles previously undertaken by the Chief Surveillance, Interception of Communications and Intelligence Services Commissioners by establishing inspection and oversight functions in a single independent body.

Home Secretary Amber Rudd commented: “The Investigatory Powers Act offers a world-leading oversight regime to ensure the powers that the security and intelligence agencies and law enforcement employ to investigate crimes and protect the public are used responsibly and proportionately. In commencing his oversight responsibility, Lord Justice Fulford is playing a vital role in providing the enhanced safeguards we’ve set out in the Act. I would like to thank the outgoing Commissioners, namely Lord Judge, Sir Stanley Burnton and Sir John Goldring, for their hard work and dedication to their respective roles.”

Home Secretary Amber Rudd

Home Secretary Amber Rudd

The Investigatory Powers Commissioner’s Office now takes over the inspection and oversight functions carried out by the previous Commissioners’ offices, and also takes on responsibility for the pre-approval of certain policing activities authorised under the Police Act 1997.

The Commissioner’s further powers – including the judicial ‘double-lock’, which will require warrants issued by the Secretary of State to also be approved by a Judicial Commissioner – are to be introduced in due course.

Lord Judge (formerly the Chief Surveillance Commissioner) and Sir Stanley Burnton (formerly the Interception of Communications Commissioner) are now standing down.

Formerly the Intelligence Services Commissioner, Sir John Goldring will take on a new role as Deputy Investigatory Powers Commissioner.

About the Author
Brian Sims BA (Hons) Hon FSyI, Editor, Risk UK (Pro-Activ Publications) Beginning his career in professional journalism at The Builder Group in March 1992, Brian was appointed Editor of Security Management Today in November 2000 having spent eight years in engineering journalism across two titles: Building Services Journal and Light & Lighting. In 2005, Brian received the BSIA Chairman’s Award for Promoting The Security Industry and, a year later, the Skills for Security Special Award for an Outstanding Contribution to the Security Business Sector. In 2008, Brian was The Security Institute’s nomination for the Association of Security Consultants’ highly prestigious Imbert Prize and, in 2013, was a nominated finalist for the Institute's George van Schalkwyk Award. An Honorary Fellow of The Security Institute, Brian serves as a Judge for the BSIA’s Security Personnel of the Year Awards and the Securitas Good Customer Award. Between 2008 and 2014, Brian pioneered the use of digital media across the security sector, including webinars and Audio Shows. Brian’s actively involved in 50-plus security groups on LinkedIn and hosts the popular Risk UK Twitter site. Brian is a frequent speaker on the conference circuit. He has organised and chaired conference programmes for both IFSEC International and ASIS International and has been published in the national media. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk UK at Pro-Activ Publications in July 2014.

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