Personal details of air passengers to be held for 5 years
May 11th, 2011 by elisa

The details of millions of British air passengers will be stored for intelligence purposes for up to five years when the UK signs a new European Union strategy to combat terrorism.

Currently, records of details such as name, age, date of birth and place of birth are kept, but the EU wants to create a database that will keep tabs on everything about an air passenger, even what they ate for lunch on the plane. The database will also store information on how the air ticket was paid for, credit card details, whether the passenger took an onward flight and who they were travelling with.

Once approved, immigration and police in EU countries can have access to this information and can hand it on to non-EU countries to help fight terrorist activities.

The news to opt in was announced on Tuesday in parliament by immigration minister Damian Green. Tory chairman of the Commons European Scrutiny Committee, Bill Cash, warned that the UK would be keeping a close eye on the policy as it develops in Brussels as it is still in its early stages.

Green told parliament: “Opting in to this directive is good for our safety, good for our security and good for our citizens.”

Those opposed to the policy believe the decision to hand over the personal details of millions of Brits has been too hasty and that there needs to be more discussion on who should have access to the information.



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