Hacked Off Statement regarding publication of Motorman Blue Book

Hacked Off notes the publication on the Guido Fawkes website of part of the Motorman files. Though we have been campaigning for full disclosure of these important documents we were not involved in this initiative. We are not in possession of the Motorman files.

Our view is that the full files should be professionally redacted and published in as clear a manner as possible by either the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) or the Leveson Inquiry, and the ICO should proactively contact the victims.

It is important to note that the complete files are already in the hands of the inquiry and all of the national newspaper groups, and that many other people have had access to parts of the files. This material is a secret only from the public and in our view partial disclosures of this kind, and of the kind published by ITN days earlier, were inevitable given the official refusal to redact and disclose.

To avoid the emergence of a partial and possibly misleading or unfair picture of press data-mining, that official position should be reversed promptly and a commitment should be given to publish as soon as possible a complete version of the Motorman records, with only those redactions that are necessary to protect the privacy of those who were intruded upon.

This would also enable the Inquiry to look much more closely at the issue of data protection, in line with its terms of reference, that has so far not been properly examined. This, and recent evidence demonstrating these practices are not historic, ought to be reviewed urgently by the Inquiry.

Victims of phone hacking and other forms of illegal intrusion by the press are welcome to get in touch with Hacked Off for advice or support. Please contact thais@hackinginquiry.org.

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