[LINK] Roxon questions plan to track users' web history
kim at holburn.net
Sun Jul 22 10:13:41 AEST 2012
> ''THE case has yet to be made'' for a controversial plan to force internet providers to store the web history of all Australians for up to two years, according to Attorney-General Nicola Roxon, who has acknowledged the financial and privacy costs of such a scheme.
> Ms Roxon expressed her reservations in an interview with The Saturday Age, in what may be a sign the government does not have the appetite for forcing through Parliament the most controversial proposal among a package of more than 40 national security measures.
> The proposals, if passed, would be the most significant expansion of the Australian national security community's powers since the Howard-era reforms of the early 2000s.
> Regarding data retention, Ms Roxon said she had some sympathy for the view of the national security community but said: ''I am not yet convinced that the cost and the return - the cost both to industry and the [civil liberties] cost to individuals - that we've made the case for what it is that people use in a way that benefits our national security. I think there is a genuine question to be tested, which is why it's such a big part of the proposal.''
> That is a view that will be greeted with some apprehension by one of the main advocates for such a regime - Neil Gaughan, who heads the federal police's High Tech Crime Centre.
> ''If we don't have a data-retention regime in place [in the future], we will not be able to commence an investigation in the first place,'' he said.
> ''And it's already getting increasingly difficult.''
> Opposition to such laws in Germany - the government has declared them invasions of privacy and forbidden them - had left German federal police agency the Bundeskriminalamt (BKA) a laughing stock, Assistant Commissioner Gaughan said. ''No one can work with them internationally; if I go to Germany with an inquiry about who called who, when and why, they can't tell us,'' he said.
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