Dr Julian Huppert MP saw off his party leader and Deputy Prime Minister Rt Hon Nick Clegg MP to win the Internet Hero Award at the 15th ISPA Awards.

The winner was decided by ISPA Council, who wanted to commend Dr Huppert for his tireless campaigning against the Communications Data Bill and for being one of the few MPs who truly understands the internet. As well as the Deputy Prime Minister, he beat PRISM whistle-blower Edward Snowden and cyber-security experts Spamhaus to claim the prize.

This year’s Internet Villain is Recep Erdogan, the Turkish Prime Minister. In recent unrest he called social media ‘a menace to society’ and has an extensive record of censorship, online surveillance and blocking. ISPA Council recognised many states do this, however Turkey should set an example in the region.

Both the Hero and Villain shortlists were dominated by state surveillance, a huge issue for the internet industry and society over the last year. The Home Secretary Rt Hon Theresa May MP was nominated for the overly broad draft Communications Data Bill, also known as the ‘snooper’s charter’ and the American PRISM programme also featuring.  Bluecoat who have been selling surveillance software to unfavourable regimes were also nominated.

“The Hero & Villain Awards have been part of the ISPAs since the first awards in 1999, and Julian Huppert is a worthy Hero, being sometimes a lone voice advocating the importance of the internet in parliament” said ISPA Secretary General Nicholas Lansman. “Recep Erdogan also deserves his award for the way he has prevented his citizens expressing themselves online” he continued.

The black tie ceremony at the Park Lane Hotel in London was attended by 300 industry representatives, politicians, media and government officials.  The evening was compered by comedian Sean Collins, with a keynote speech from broadcaster and technology critic Bill Thompson. Richard Cox, Chief Technology Officer for Spamhaus, who are also 15 years old. He thanked the internet industry for its support over the last 15 years. Spamhaus shot to recognition in the spring for its contribution fending off what was claimed to be the world’s biggest cyber-attack

For details of the winners see below and for more information and photos go to www.ispaawards.org.uk. A full list of winners can be seen here.

About the ISPA Awards

The 2013 ISPA Awards were the internet industry awards and was the 15th ISPAs. To reflect the latest industry developments we have introduced Best Superfast and Best Fixed Wireless, both categories that have seen important growth in the last year. Superfast take up is a key priority for the government, and Fixed Wireless presents a good solution for getting broadband to rural parts of the UK.

The awards ceremony was on 11th July 2013 in the Park Lane Sheraton hotel in London, Bill Thompson gave the keynote speech and full information about the awards can be found at www.ispaawards.org.uk. We are very happy to announce that the Internet Telephony Award is sponsored by Magrathea and the Best Internet Hero and Internet Villain Awards are sponsored by internet fulfilment experts  NetLynk Direct.

For further information please contact the ISPA Press Office (020 3397 3308).