Telecommunications service supplied in co-operation with intelligence agencies
Lead NCPUnited Kingdom
Supporting NCP(s)None Selected
DescriptionSpecific instance notified by the NGO Reprieve regarding the activities of British Telecommunications PLC in the United Kingdom.
Theme(s)General policies, Human rights
Date19 Aug 2014
Host country(ies)United Kingdom
Industry sectorInformation and communication
StatusNot accepted

Read the initial assessment issued by the UK NCP concluding the specific instance - January 2015


In August 2014 the UK NCP received a request for review from the NGO Reprieve alleging that British Telecommunications PLC (BT) had breached the general policies, and human rights provisions of the Guidelines because it permits UK and US intelligence agencies to intercept its customers’ communications, from which these agencies derive intelligence that informs these military operations, thus linking it to the human rights impacts of US military operations in Yemen. 

BT accepted an invitation from the UK NCP to respond although it did not accept the allegations, and noted that it would in any case be precluded by UK law from disclosing any details relating to an interception request.

The NCP undertook an initial assessment and concluded that the specific instance did not merit further consideration. The reasons for its decision are outlined in detail in its initial assessment, issued in January 2015.


See also: Assessment by the UK NCP of a separate specific instance of linked allegations by Reprieve about BT’s supply of equipment to a US defence agency.