Insights Home Office appoints Lord Anderson KBE KC to undertake independent review of Investigatory Powers Act 2016


The Home Secretary has appointed Lord (David) Anderson KBE KC to carry out an independent review of the Investigatory Powers Act 2016. The Investigatory Powers Act provides a framework for the use of investigatory powers by the security and intelligence agencies, law enforcement and other public authorities. These powers cover:

  • the interception of communications;
  • the retention and acquisition of communications data;
  • equipment interference for obtaining communications and other data; and
  • the retention and examination of bulk personal datasets.

Lord Anderson’s review will be independent from the Home Secretary’s statutory report (see item above) and will assess the case for legislative change, now or in the future.

The Government has also published the terms of reference for the review, which will focus on the effectiveness of the bulk personal dataset regime, criteria for obtaining internet connection records, the suitability of certain definitions within the act, and the resilience and agility of warranty processes and the oversight regime.

Lord Anderson will carry out his own consultation with law enforcement, the intelligence agencies, and wider public authorities, as well as other external organisations and individuals with an interest in this work.

He will conclude his review and publish his findings in a report later in 2023. To read the Government’s press release in full, click here. To access the terms of reference, click here.