The new legislation will also ensure the same long-term operations must be authorised internally by a chief constable.
Minister for Policing Damian Green said:
Undercover police operations are vital in the fight against terrorism and serious organised crime. However, covert powers must be used proportionately and only when necessary.
I announced today our intention to legislate to ensure an independent third party – the Office of Surveillance Commissioners – will provide enhanced judicial oversight of all undercover police deployments.
It means law enforcement agencies will need to notify the OSC at the outset of all undercover operations and get OSC approval for every deployment that lasts longer than 12 months.
We want the highest standards of professionalism and excellence in all aspects of policing.