Inside GCHQ: Is the secret agency misusing Alan Turing's legacy?

I APPROACH a gatehouse beside a tall metal fence bristling with warnings and barbed wire. Few reporters get inside the UK’s Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ), and it takes three ID checks and several security gates, plus handing over my phone and tablet, before I find myself in front of the agency’s giant stone emblem. The building is in the shape of a giant doughnut, but I’ve only penetrated the outer glaze.

I have been invited here for the launch of a new biography, Prof: Alan Turing Decoded, written by his nephew Dermot Turing. Alan Turing was one of the leading second world war codebreakers at the proto-GCHQ Bletchley Park, and the modern day spooks hold him dear in their hearts. But the event, the first of its kind at GCHQ, strikes me as something of a PR stunt for an agency that is now mostly associated …

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