BASC challenges police over RSPCA access to firearms licensing information

Guns for saleMidland Game Fair Weston Park 2004Police forces in the UK are being asked for formal assurances that they do not share confidential firearms licensing information with private or charitable organisations.

The UK’s largest shooting organisation, the British Association for Shooting and Conservation (BASC), is writing to every chief constable after press reports claimed some forces have information-sharing agreements with the RSPCA, which could include firearms data. This is despite assurances, received by BASC last week from the police, that such information is not shared.

BASC’s director of firearms Bill Harriman said: “BASC is very concerned that the highly sensitive and confidential details of firearm and shotgun certificate holders may have been made available to a non-statutory agency.  This ill-considered action could put the security of firearm and shotgun holders at risk. Certificate holders have always relied on their details being treated confidentially by the police. Diluting the protection that such anonymity brings is highly irresponsible and breaches the trust placed in the police by lawful gun owners.”