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Australian Government Seeks To Boost Spy Agencies' Powers 54

Posted by samzenpus
from the help-us-to-help-you dept.
angry tapir writes The Australian government has indicated it intends to seek a boost to the powers of Australia's spy agencies, particularly ASIO (the Australian Security Intelligence Organization). The attorney-general told the Senate today that the government would introduce legislation based on recommendations of a parliamentary committee that last year canvassed "reforms" including boosting ASIO's power to penetrate third party computer systems to intercept communications to and from a target. That report also covered other issues such as the possibility of introducing a mandatory data retention scheme for ISPs and telcos.
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Australian Government Seeks To Boost Spy Agencies' Powers

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  • Fermi paradox (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 26, 2014 @06:12AM (#47322819)

    And another explanation for the Fermi paradox.. If technology itself will not kill us (or we wit our technology), governments around the world will get such control freaks that they in effect sabotage the civilization itself.

    We seen examples of that in the past, when governments get too power hungry - take the ancient Romans as example - society will collapse.

    One of the real issues is the broken justification - war against terror is a sophism. If you verify the amount of casualties in western countries, you will see that per saved life, the effort done and money wasted is totally disproportional. If we are after saving lives, we would make roads safer, obliged car checkups free, public healthcare for free, and a few more other things a civilized society would or could do, wasting less money and with higher efforts.

    The truth is that we allow a elite to grab more and more power, powers where even medieval rulers only could have dreamed of. And we all know that it we continue this path, the system will collapse. Just power hungry people don't care that - they are not after saving civilians or society - they are after saving themselves.

    Soon, we will live in a society that's resembling the society as seen in the (cult) movie Brazil. Any technological progress will cease. Either some revolution happens - with all risks, either we are heading towards new dark ages.

    I apologize for using the Fermi paradox to get your attention, but a bit of nerd will hopefully see the bigger view. Our question as society is not: where are we now. But more, where do we want to be in 50 or 100 years. And since politicians don't come up with the (right) answers, others must, if we want to survive on this nice planet.

    • by Anonymous Coward
      Wait now. Civilization and society can be seen at a meta level as things that are also alive. They are trying to evolve. They may do so at the expense of the individual. Take the current privacy debate. Either way you come down on that debate, it is clear that less privacy can be made to benefit society as a whole (prevent / curtail dangerous actions, etc.) while harming individuals. (The debate mostly centers on how much of each of those happens and where to set the privacy dials and knobs). But it is clea
    • One of the real issues is the broken justification - war against terror is a sophism. If you verify the amount of casualties in western countries, you will see that per saved life, the effort done and money wasted is totally disproportional. If we are after saving lives, we would make roads safer, obliged car checkups free, public healthcare for free, and a few more other things a civilized society would or could do, wasting less money and with higher efforts.

      The 'justification' would be broken even if their actions did save many lives. Freedom is simply more important than safety.

    • by oobayly (1056050)

      But, but but, they were communist sympathisers - that should have been reason enough.

    • by rtb61 (674572)

      The intent of the right wingers is pretty bloody obvious, They want to pull the teeth of Australian courts who routinely kick ASIOs arse for misbehaving. Everything to do with security risks but not in the way they claim, the security is right wing governments attempting to implement autocratic control. One wonders what ASIO has actually been able to do other than burn up hundreds of millions of dollar, demonstrate a palpable right wing political bias and be the obedient puppets of the CIA and SIS/MI6. The

    • by mjwx (966435)

      To explain the situation to our non Australian friends,

      This is being proposed by the Atourney General of the ACT (Australian Capital Territory) George Brandis who is pretty much a complete and utter moron and in the pocket of the PM, Tony Abbott (who's went pretty far to the right and kept going).

      Brandis first rose to fame in the 2013 election where he pardoned Tony Abbott's cheif of staff for a drink driving charge (for our American compatriots, this is a serious offence in Australia). Peta Credlin

  • by Anonymous Coward

    The australian government is corrupt to the core and has been busted spying on companies for its big political donors. They have been spying on their own citizens too without probable cause. People have no bills of rights. The police are corrupt. The spy agencies are corrupt. The police who watch the spy agencies are corrupt. The whole country is one big shitbag of corruption.

    http://www.thesaturdaypaper.com.au/world/2014/03/08/the-hague-rules-timor-leste-material-seized-asio-raids/1394197200
    http://dissident

  • by GeekWithAKnife (2717871) on Thursday June 26, 2014 @07:23AM (#47323063)

    Let's face it, they are probably already doing most of what they propose to legislate, might as well make it official.

    I guess it's still better than secret courts that approve actions that no one can oppose because that too is a secret.

    It works really well for the US, why not for our good friends down under?
  • by Electricity Likes Me (1098643) on Thursday June 26, 2014 @07:43AM (#47323119)

    What is with this policy? We've killed it - repeatedly and it just won't stay dead.

    I mean we know they're doing intercepts of some sort anyway, and we know they retain probably quite a bit, but the big benefit at the moment is none of this can be used in court.

    And for the types of things it's worth stopping, you don't need to use it since if you grab some terrorists with a couple kilograms of fertilizer and diesel in a truck, then you've got all your evidence.

    What seems way more likely to me is that this is being pushed hard by the copyright lobby, who, once they can legally obtain the data, will want to use it to go after people.

    • by dbIII (701233)

      What is with this policy? We've killed it - repeatedly and it just won't stay dead.

      ASIO like it and whenever a new government looks weak and easily influenced they roll it out again to give it another try.

    • by mjwx (966435)

      What is with this policy? We've killed it - repeatedly and it just won't stay dead.

      What seems way more likely to me is that this is being pushed hard by the copyright lobby, who, once they can legally obtain the data, will want to use it to go after people.

      It's being proposed by George Brandis, the same guy who said it's OK to be a biggot and let Tony Abbott's chief of staff walk from a drink driving conviction.

      It'll never pass (hostile senate and possible revolt from moderate back benchers).

      But you're right. It's being pushed by the media conglomerates to get ISP's to spy on their own customers and then turn that data over to them so they can sue. Brandis is pretty much in the pockets of big media anyway (well I hope he is, if he's ruining his reputati

    • ASIO notices you and wants to know more about you. A cleared official or bureaucrat authorizes a "sneak and peek" like digital finding, tasking your home computer for a look.
      The new legal idea is to place ASIO spyware into your Windows, Apple (other OS?) computer and then see if you need more attention without complex extra court requests.
      Logs and malware product is then reviewed. The malware would be made to look and feel like any other infected bot computer in Australia - another suburban adsl 2+ "hom
  • theyre just taking their cue from the us. every bully needs a lapdog.
  • Our current government are arseholes. Yes, I am saying the other mob is better. Not much better perhaps, but better than this bunch of complete dicks.

    Don't get me started on what they've done to our National Broadband Network.

    No, I didn't vote for them.

    • by dbIII (701233)
      I'll get started. There appears to be a policy of demolishing anything that could be seen as a legacy of the previous government so that when the elections next come up there is nothing left that reminds voters that anything positive was done by them. While that's bad enough on it's own there are some long running things that date back longer that have been removed as well just in case the other party can get some political milage out of it.

      The Broadband Network is now in the hands of an utter loser call
  • For handling network and serial communications.

For God's sake, stop researching for a while and begin to think!

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