Dacre promises new look at rules on hacking by journalists

Dacre promises new look at rules on hacking by journalists
Dacre promises new look at rules on hacking by journalists 

By Owen Gibson
media correspondent
The Guardian
June 17 2008

The editor of the Daily Mail, Paul Dacre, has promised to re-examine the 
rules that prevent journalists hacking into computers to obtain personal 
information, to clarify and possibly tighten them, after becoming 
chairman of the body responsible for the editors' code that governs 
newspapers and magazines.

In his report on the activities of the committee that reviews and 
revises the self-regulatory code overseen by the Press Complaints 
Commission, he said the industry had faced a challenging year.

"The threat of custodial sentences under the Data Protection Act was 
particularly worrying because of the effect it would have had on press 
freedom by inhibiting investigative reporting," he said. "Such sentences 
would also have meant that Britain would have been one of the only 
countries in the civilised world to jail journalists trying to do their 

Richard Thomas, the information commissioner, has campaigned for jail 
sentences for journalists breaking data protection laws after he 
compiled two reports showing that newspapers - including the Daily Mail
- habitually bought personal details from private investigators.


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