Phew, we finally got rid of those pesky encrypted phone apps… Bleak Dystopia here we come!
If the Australian government has this back door access, the rest of the Five Eyes are just going to use Australia to circumvent their own legal systems. I also expect this will be exploited by hackers once they know there’s a back door present somewhere in the system.
With no Bill of Rights for her citizens, Australia is perfectly placed to spy on the domestic communications of the other 5 Eyes partner nations on behalf of their governments, as well as the communications of Australian citizens. Prior to this bill passing, Australia had to request the NZ or Canadian governments to intercept targeted Australian domestic communications. There must have been a time lag between interception and the data being passed over to the Australian DSO. The Australian government is impatient, so they’ve cut out the middle man.
The East German STASI would be cracking a collective boner over this…
The law, opposed by privacy advocates, requires tech companies to provide law enforcement and security agencies with access to encrypted communications.
CANBERRA, Australia — The Australian Parliament passed a contentious encryption bill on Thursday to require technology companies to provide law enforcement and security agencies with access to encrypted communications.
Privacy advocates, technology companies and other businesses had strongly opposed the bill, but Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s government said it was needed to thwart criminals and terrorists who use encrypted messaging programs to communicate.
“This ensures that our national security and law enforcement agencies have the modern tools they need, with appropriate authority and oversight, to access the encrypted conversations of those who seek to do us harm,” Attorney General Christian Porter said.
Opponents of the bill argued that it not only compromised Australians’ privacy but was vaguely written in a way that could lead to abuses. They also said it was being rushed through Parliament without proper consultation with the public. Lizzie O’Shea, a human rights lawyer, called it “a terrible truncation of the process.”
Ms. O’Shea has written that the bill has global implications, arguing that the United States and other allies want Australia to “lead the charge” in giving security agencies access to encrypted data.
h/t Bearded Clam