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Privacy Government

New Zealand Cyber Spies Win New Powers 132

Posted by timothy
from the mmm-new-powers dept.
caeos writes "New cyber-monitoring measures have been quietly introduced in New Zealand giving police and Security Intelligence Service officers the power to monitor all aspects of someone's online life. The measures are the largest expansion of police and SIS surveillance capabilities for decades, and mean that all mobile calls and texts, email, internet surfing and online shopping, chatting and social networking can be monitored anywhere in New Zealand. The New Zealand Security Intelligence Service (NZSIS or SIS) is an intelligence agency of the New Zealand government."
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New Zealand Cyber Spies Win New Powers

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  • by meist3r (1061628) on Saturday January 02, 2010 @08:25PM (#30627856)
    Is just there to help light the streets at night.

    Oh Welcome, my dear friends, to the future: Where even the worst crimes against humanity are "worth it".
  • Re:Warrants (Score:5, Insightful)

    by wizardforce (1005805) on Saturday January 02, 2010 @08:26PM (#30627866) Journal

    Police and SIS must still obtain an interception warrant naming a person or place they want to monitor but, compared to the phone taps of the past, a single warrant now covers phone, email and all internet activity.

    In other words, they no longer have to specify which form of electronic communication they wish to monitor; one blanket warrant covers them all...

  • Re:Good grief. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by wizardforce (1005805) on Saturday January 02, 2010 @08:31PM (#30627892) Journal

    Encrypted communication such as that between your self and your bank would be considered private. Do you really believe that the government tapping someone's communications is no big deal?

  • Re:Good grief. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by ickleberry (864871) <web@pineapple.vg> on Saturday January 02, 2010 @08:32PM (#30627900) Homepage
    I always think that privacy went out the window for a large percentage of the population (though more for young people) once they realised they could exchange privacy for attention or the illusion of getting attention on sites like Facebook

    there is also a distinct lack of support for good old shared secret and one-time pad encryption in modern email/IM standards so that isn't helping either. maybe even if things like PGP and 'off the record' plugins were standard then it might be used outside the realm of nerds.
  • Re:Good grief. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by wizardforce (1005805) on Saturday January 02, 2010 @08:34PM (#30627922) Journal

    You may not realize it but your argument could also be used to justify massive surveillance programs outside of peoples' homes like that in London. After all, what you do outside isn't terribly private either; people can see you all the time but that doesn't make the surveillance mundane and not worth mentioning...

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday January 02, 2010 @08:36PM (#30627940)

    Police association vice-president Stuart Mills said ... that people who weren't committing criminal offences had little to fear.

    That's what everyone says who wants to violate privacy. They forget that the privacy itself has value. I fear that my privacy will be violated, for no reason other than that I want privacy. Why do I want privacy? I don't have to justify that - wanting privacy is like wanting happiness. Why do you want happiness? There is no reason. Happiness and privacy are end-wants. People want other things, only because those other things provide happiness and privacy.

    Well, it is for me anyway. Other people may have sensitive things that they want to do anonymously, without anyone finding out who they are, like criticizing a dictator. That's also a valid reason for privacy.

  • by Ethanol-fueled (1125189) * on Saturday January 02, 2010 @09:02PM (#30628140) Homepage Journal
    Right. Taking away privacy is not necessary, in fact it's damn dehumanizing.

    It's like being in a zoo, where you know everybody is pointing and laughing at you while you shit behind a wall of glass.

    Imagine this: you're a soldier serving in Iraq or Afghanistan. You may be a colonel with 20 years of service or a lowly grunt with 2. You're a married man who obviously can't have sex, so you and your wife arrange to have a little private "pillow talk" over the phone. NSA agents pull up your private conversation [boingboing.net] for the "lulz", laughing their asses off at you even though you might die tomorrow for the very same government who is paying for them to watch you like a zoo exhibit and e-mail each other details of your sex life just as office workers do the latest jokes.

    Fuck that, man.
  • by pspahn (1175617) on Saturday January 02, 2010 @10:27PM (#30628582)
    I'm perfectly aware of the argument about privacy and why it's a good thing. I'm not sure others are aware of why privacy is a bad thing.

    This kind of technology and power in the hands of a certain historical figure from 1930's Europe is indeed something that would worry many. In this day and age, conspiracy theorists aside, a majority of law abiding citizens should have no problem with this technology, provided they are educated and informed on its use.

    This is no different than the conversation I had with my girlfriend's brother the other night. He recently got off probation and we were having the talk about cops and stuff while driving to a concert. He, of course, hates cops, and if he's doing things that are illegal, he should. If you aren't breaking the law, fear of law enforcement borders on irrational. And instead of a response coming back to me mentioning things like Rodney King, cli-Che Guevara, or some martyr of an oppressive militant dictatorship, why not spend some time reading about the countless times when some honest, moral, and ethical person's life was dramatically improved because of modernized laws in the hands of an honest, moral, and ethical society.

    You see, there are idealists on the other side of the argument as well.

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