Here's an odd fact. HMRC has the right to monitor what websites you use, see where and when phone calls were placed and know the date and time of your emails. And it made over 14,000 of these snooping requests last year.

The authorisation to spy on taxpayers is granted under the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000, which lets the UK's tax inspectors monitor the digital lives of UK taxpayers -- but only during tax evasion investigations.

The Act doesn't go so far as actually allowing HMRC to read our emails and SMS messages when it suspects us of fiddling taxes, with separate authorisation from the Home Secretary required to actually intercept and read personal correspondence. [Telegraph]

Image credit: Surveillance from Shutterstock