Intelligence agency ASIO is using the Snowden leaks to bolster its case for laws forcing Australian telecommunications companies to store certain types of customers’ internet and telephone data for a period of what some law enforcement agencies would like to be two years.
The federal spying agency is supported by the Northern Territory Police, Victoria Police, Australian Federal Police, Australian Crime Commission and Australian Commission for Law Enforcement Integrity, who all say they are in support of a data-retention regime.
What type of data should be stored by internet and phone providers is another question. Although storing “content” data has been ruled out under a retention scheme, at least two agencies – the Northern Territory Police and Victoria Police – want web-browsing histories stored.
In its submission to a parliamentary inquiry into potential changes to telecommunications laws, ASIO argues that more people are encrypting their web communications after revelations made by US intelligence contractor Edward Snowden about widespread data collection programs by governments. READ MORE