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Police super-database prompts Liberty warning on privacy

A new super-database being built for the police represents a “grave” risk to privacy, a leading human rights group has said.

Liberty claims the government is glossing over concerns that the database, the largest built for British law enforcement, threatens civil liberties. The group fears it gives massive power to the state at the expense of millions of Britons.

The law enforcement data service (LEDS) will use two existing stores of information: the police national computer, containing criminal convictions; and the police national database, which holds details such as intelligence.

The new database will also include sensitive information on victims, as well as those who have been cleared of wrongdoing. The government accepts that large amounts of the data will have nothing to do with crime.

The police national database holds intelligence, sometimes unproven, about individuals, as well as 12 million images.

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