about · pressroom · partners & sponsors · contact 




Support Activities

  Duncan Campbell (UK)
Journalist, IPTV Ltd

World-InfoCon (Day 1)
Scottish born Duncan Campbell is an investigative journalist, author, consultant and television producer specialising in privacy, civil liberties and secrecy issues. His best-known investigations have led to major legal clashes with successive British governments. In 1976, he was the first journalist to reveal the existence of the global British electronic spying agency GCHQ (Government Communications Headquarters). This led to the "ABC" trial in 1978, when the government attempted to jail him for up to 30 years for breaking Official Secrecy laws. The prosecution failed.

In 1980, he investigated the United States National Security Agency, and exposed the role of the NSA's Menwith Hill Station in Yorkshire, England in tapping European and worldwide communications. In another clash in 1987, Special Branch officials raided his office, his house and the Scottish headquarters of the BBC to seize tapes from a six part series Campbell had made for BBC-2, called "Secret Society". One programme revealed plans for the first ever British spy satellite, codenamed "Zircon".

From 1978 to 1994 he was an investigative writer, then an associate editor and finally the chairman of the British political weekly New Statesman. He founded his own production company, IPTV Ltd, in 1990. IPTV has made investigative documentaries for Britain's Channel Four television. The subjects covered have included corruption in sport and in the customs service, medical fraud and malpractice, and "Undercover Britain" programmes for Channel 4, using concealed cameras to film abuses.

In 1988, he revealed the existence of the ECHELON project, which has since 1997 become controversial throughout the world and especially in Europe. In 1998, he was asked by the European Parliament to report on the development of surveillance technology and the risk of abuse of economic information, especially in relation to the ECHELON system. His report, "Interception Capabilities 2000" was approved by the European Parliament in April 1999, and presented to the parliament in Brussels in February 2000. In July 2000, the European Parliament appointed a committee of 36 MEPs to further investigate the ECHELON system, which will report in July 2001.

In 1999 and 2000, Campbell participated in the joint investigation of systematic smuggling and tax evasion by multinational tobacco companies, publishing reports in the British Guardian in January 2000. He was then asked to give evidence to the parliamentary committee on Health, which has led to a full-scale British government investigation of British American Tobacco plc, the world's second largest international tobacco company.

Campbell has reported on industrial espionage activities and policies, as well as documentary evidence about ECHELON and other planned or existing communications surveillance systems. He has also frequently been appointed an expert witnesses in court cases involving communications, defence and surveillance. In 2000, he was appointed one of two expert witnesses for the defence in the planned trial of former Army officer Lt Col Nigel Wylde under the 1989 Official Secrets Act. After receiving his report showing that secrets which were allegedly revealed by the former officer were in the public domain, the government abandoned the case on 1 November 2000.


 privacy policy