HMRC internal manual

Compliance Handbook

CH229120 - How to do a compliance check: information powers: rules that apply to all notices: Communications Service Providers

Communications Service Providers (CSPs) are commercial organisations which provide access to either, or both electronic and postal communications.

Their three main areas of business are telephony, the Internet or any form of surface mail, either as a postal or courier service. Under Part I, Chapter II of The Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 they can be compelled under a legal process to provide information relating to who uses their service, how they use it and how the service is provided by them.

They cannot be compelled to provide any information which relates to the contents of any communication they carry.

Where you are considering a request for documents from a CSP you must first seek the approval of the National Telecoms Unit.