FCA and HMRC to gain new powers under ‘snoopers’ charter’

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New powers to be unveiled this week will see the FCA and HM Revenue and Customs gain access to the public’s internet search history and social media activity.

The Telegraph reports technology firms will have to keep records of the websites and app people have used and details of when they accessed them for 12 months, as part of legislation to be published on Wednesday.

The pages people have used and the content of any messages cannot be seen without a warrant.

A total of 38 bodies will be able to access these records to “detect or prevent crime”, and it is thought the most common users of the new powers will be intelligence agencies, police and the National Crime Agency.

But other bodies such as the FCA, HMRC, the Department for Work and Pensions and councils will also be able to access the information.

The powers will be overseen by a new Investigatory Powers Commissioner. Ministers also want to introduce heavy fines for those who abuse the new powers.