MI6 has called for a probe after the wife of Sir John Sawers (diplomat, spy, the British ambassador to the United Nations and future chief of MI6, the Secret Intelligence Service) published family details on her Facebook page.
Several publications today report that Lady Sawers disclosed details such as the location of the London apartment used by the couple, as well as the whereabouts of Sir John’s parents and their three children. The lack of privacy protection on her profile meant that Facebook’s 200 million users in the open-access London network could see the information posted by Lady Sawers.
Conservative MP Patrick Mercer, chairman of the counter-terrorism sub-committee claims the incident is cause for security concern. "It raises all sorts of worrying issues about the... personal life, in particular the location of flats, transport details, movement details, of an individual who is our most senior counter-terrorism officer abroad,” Mercer told the BBC. "A great deal of taxpayers' money has been spent over the past several decades making sure he and his family are protected from security compromises,” the MP explained, adding, “Well, it doesn't seem to be very relevant any more, does it?"
The BBC also cites Liberal Democrat foreign affairs spokesman Edward Davey who shares Mercer’s opinion that the information has the potential to be damaging. "We would be negligent if there wasn't an internal inquiry into the security implications, not just in relation to MI6 but to Sir John and his family," he said, according to the BBC.
That said, there are plenty of folks who think the whole thing is a storm in a teacup. Foreign Secretary David Miliband denied claims that security had been compromised, and told the BBC that the make of Sawers’ swimsuit does not constitute a state secret. "It is not a state secret that he wears Speedo swimming trunks, for goodness sake let's grow up.” Sir John Major, former prime minister, said that there are far more worrying issues to be focusing on and said the whole thing was “overblown.”
Read the full story here.
Do you think the holiday snaps or information posted by Lady Sawers is cause for concern? Or do you, like Sir John Major and David Miliband, think that the whole thing has been blown way out of proportion? Let us know in the comments below!