Nobody really knows how or to what extent Big Brother is keeping an eye on us, but now things could get worse in Slovakia as last week the Ministry of Interior signed a contract with an Israeli company for a system that will allow the police to tap phone calls with no cross-checking.
The contract means that from the start of next year the police force should have an independent tapping system that is not linked in anyway to other authorities. Naturally, the move has caused some concern, also in the coalition.
Pravda daily cites head of Most-Hid Bela Bugar as saying how basically nobody had agreed with interior minister Daniel Lipsic’s proposal at the Coalition Council meeting. Bugar said the proposal had not been approved and there would be problems if Lipsic tries to go ahead with the plan.
Lipsic’s ministry would not explain why it had selected the particular system, called Verint, in the face of coalition opposition, with ministry spokesman Gabor Grendel refusing to divulge further information. The new system, though, looks set to give the police a free hand to tune into any conversation they want without the possibility of some other authority controlling them.
There has been a lot of discussion in Slovakia recently after accusations that MPs and journalists were having their calls tapped, and about how such practices should be limited and kept under check. So remember to watch what you are saying the next time you make a phone call, as you could be incriminating yourself over a harmless statement made in jest.