6 July 2011
A media storm has been brewing over the past few days concerning unscrupulous journalists hacking into the mobile phones of politicians, celebrities (whatever that means!) and people in the news. What seems to have emerged is that journalists, or one journalist, from the News of the World newspaper, has been hacking into various telephones including those of Millie Dowler, the 13-year-old schoolgirl who disappeared last year. even before she had been found. The journalist deleted some of the messages on the phone to give more space for incoming calls and gave his reasons for doing so was that by hacking into the mobile phone and ascertaining if it was being used or had received messages from someone, he would be able to assist the police in finding her. It rather backfired when the parents of the missing girl noticed that various messages have been deleted and their hopes were raised that she was still in possession of the telephone and still using it and therefore still alive which, in the event, she was not.
Daily, more and more stories are emerging of people whose telephones may have been tapped, the latest of which was one of the fathers of the two girls who were abducted and murdered in Soham, some nine years ago, for which, eventually Peter Sutcliffe and his girlfriend were charged and imprisoned for life
Quite apart from the privacy element, which is bad enough in itself, the distress caused to the victims families noticing that the telephone was being used and therefore hoping above hope that this was evidence that their loved one was still alive and using the telephone, is immeasurable and quite beyond the true comprehension of those of us who have not suffered such distress. I believe the government will need to step in and pass some legislation making hacking into private phones a crime, punishable by imprisonment.
At present, I believe they can only be charged with invasion of one’s privacy for which they will be liable to pay damages
I had an excellent three-hour session with Paul this afternoon and I believe he has cracked the problem of embedding pictures or videos into the blog, into their respective categories and with a click link to access them through the diary entries. We are having another session together next week when he will show me how he believes it can be done.
I have also commissioned Paul to go back to last October and search through to the current date to find out any missing videos or pictures and add them in.