The UK government will face a rebellion in the House of Lords over its much criticized Regulation and Investigatory Powers Bill today, reports say.

Business leaders are preparing to support the campaign to halt the progress of the much-vilified bill, which Chris Humphries, director general of the British Chamber of Commerce, criticized for the potential damage it could cause to British e-businesses last week.

Other critics of the government’s e-regulation bill include the Institute of Directors, and the London School of Economics, who will publish their findings on the Bill later this week. The Alliance for Electronic Business - which includes the Confederation of British Industry - is also expected to savage the bill later this week, according to

Tim Berners-Lee, regarded as a founding father of the Web, criticized the Bill in the Observer newspaper yesterday, claiming it would stifle the development of the Internet. He said: "It gives a government great power to abuse personal and commercial innovation." He also suggests that the Bill's safeguards are inadequate, and criticizes the lack of recourse it offers to citizens wrongly targeted, as well as its lack of independent monitoring authorities.

The progress of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Bill is being closely watched by other governments. The US failed to pass similar measures to control electronic communications last year.