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'Blacklist' blacklisted by UK police

Monday 7 May 2012 11:35 a.m.

UK police have banned their IT staff from using the terms 'blacklist' and 'whitelist', over fears the words could be construed as racist.

According to UK paper The Sun, in an email to staff Scotland Yard security services chief Brian Douglas wrote: “IB (Information Board) are uncomfortable with the use of the term Whitelist (and I presume Blacklist). I am sure we can appreciate the sensitivity around the use of such terminology today so please ensure it is no longer used.”

Instead, staff have been asked to use the terms 'greenlist' and 'redlist'.

An anonymous source at Scotland Yard told The Sun it was a "bizarre" decision.

“Do we really think these words are discriminatory?" they told the paper. "The truth is they’re nothing to do with race whatsoever and are very common IT terms. Banning them won’t solve any genuine problems the Met has with racism.”

Scotland Yard said it was "not a change in policy", just a "more appropriate use of language".

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