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IPFS News Link • Police State

Australian powers to spy on cybercrime suspects given green light

• by Paul Karp

A government bill to create new police powers to spy on criminal suspects online, disrupt their data and take over their accounts has been passed with the support of Labor.

The identify and disrupt bill passed the Senate on Wednesday, despite concerns about the low bar of who can authorise a warrant, and that the government failed to implement all the safeguards recommended by the bipartisan joint committee on intelligence and security.

The bill creates three new types of warrants to enable the AFP and Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission to modify and delete data, take over accounts and spy on Australians in networks suspected of committing crimes.

Earlier in August, the parliamentary joint committee on intelligence and security – (PJCIS) chaired by the Liberal senator James Paterson – made a series of recommendations to improve oversight and safeguards.