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Re: Australia won't back away from data retention plan


The head of the Australian Secret Intelligence Service (ASIS) has warned IT security challenges "pose one of the biggest threats of the decade", as the security landscape makes covert intelligence operations more difficult for agents.

Director-general Nick Warner said this week that despite the Federal Government spending "considerable resources" on boosting intelligence-gathering capabilities for ASIS and other Australian authorities, use of the internet and closed networks to collect information had become dangerous for the spy agency's staff.


Raises technical, regulatory issues.

Cloud providers and social networks could be obliged to capture and store customer information for lawful interception under a new proposal by the federal Attorney-General's department.

The proposal is part of a wide-ranging review of telecommunications interception and intelligence community legislation Attorney-General Nicola Roxon referred to a parliamentary committee in May for further consideration.

In a 61-page discussion paper released on Tuesday (pdf), the department said it was considering whether to expand the interception regime beyond its existing scope of telcos and internet service providers.

The department looked to include the "broad range of current telecommunications industry participants" that had grown since the law's inception in 1979.

It highlighted social networks and cloud computing providers, whose exclusion under current legislation created "potential vulnerabilities in the interception regime that are capable of being manipulated by criminals".

"Consideration should be given to extending the interception regime to such providers to remove uncertainty about the application of industry obligations in relation to agency requests and to better position Australia to meet domestic and international demands," the discussion paper notes.

The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing - Edmund Burke


1 edit

Interesting link and insight:


Mandatory Data Retention Irreconcilable with Fundamental Human Rights

by Roderick on September 19, 2012

Revisiting our submission to a previous inquiry into privacy, I think it has a very good section on data retention and some of the other proposals currently being considered in the National Security Inquiry.

Data Retention

Last month it was revealed that the Federal Government Attorney-General’s Department had been for some time considering the implementation of a legislatively mandated telecommunications data retention regime in Australia and had been approaching Internet Service Providers (ISPs) with respect to the extent to which data could be retained. The compulsory standard to which the Department has signaled it was investigating equivalency with was the European Data Retention Directive.

The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing - Edmund Burke