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UK Prime Minister may ban rioters from social networking

David Cameron has been in the spotlight this week as he has tried to deal with the horrific riots in specific parts of the United Kingdom. His latest statement today says that they are looking into ways of banning rioters from social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter.

Analysis this week has shown that rioters have been using social networking sites and protected networks such as BlackBerry Messenger to stay ahead of the police and to plan areas to target. Cameron said that he is going to review whether it is possible to ban suspected rioters from using social networking sites. He said this on a live broadcast on Sky News from the Commons debate.

David Cameron - UK Prime Minister: courtesy Getty Images

He has also said that the BBC and Sky News will have a responsibility to hand over their footage of the riots to the police, including material that didn’t air on television. The BBC have fought these challenges in the past, claiming that handing over unused footage to the police would damage their ‘editorial independence’.

Cameron said “Everyone watching these horrific actions will be stuck by how they were organised via social media. Free flow of information can be used for good. But it can also be used for ill.

When people are using social media for violence we need to stop them. So we are working with the police, the intelligence services and industry to look at whether it would be right to stop people communicating via these websites and services when we know they are plotting violence, disorder and criminality.”

When asked about support for the police he said “I have also asked the police if they need any other new powers.” Indicating that he would be willing to give them further means to deal with offenders and rioters.

Kitguru says: How can you really stop people accessing social networks?

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