Subject Access Request to MI5 in 2001

On 10 December 2001 I sent a subject access request to MI5. I used a standard phrasing which had been supplied to me by another person, and I sent a cheque for 10. I wrote; "I made a formal complaint in February 1997 to the Security Service Tribunal, and they passed my personal details on to you. You must therefore have written information on me within your service."

The Data Controller's response is listed in pages 1-2 of the above TIFF file. He acknowledges receipt of the cheque, and sends a form to be filled out. MI5's response is dated 19 December 2001 and was sent 21 December 2001, just before Christmas. MI5 severely attacked me over the Christmas period; that was their real response to my subject access request. It took me some time to compose a response to their letter. My response gave a complete listing of residential addresses, previous work addresses in the UK and Canada, vehicles I had owned, and a description of the data they might have on me. In the covering letter sent 26 January 2002 I asked whether the term "National Security" could be defined, and whether the Home Secretary was in any way involved in the decision making as to the applicability of the term "National Security" to a particular subject access request.

My SAR was acknowledged by MI5 on 30 January 2002, but on 28 February they wrote again asking for the cheque to be made to a different payee. I wrote again with a new cheque on 4 March, reminding them they had 40 days to reply; but they missed that deadline; I sent them a reminder on 14 March 2002; they replied late on 20 March 2002. Their reply is in the TIFF file pages 3-5. They admit to holding some data as listed in the Appendix to their letter; the key letter is 24/4/97 "Security Service replied to the Tribunal", because that letter would have contained a summary of MI5 inquiries into myself.

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