Cyber Security Minister Angus Taylor said it did not want to be seen as trying to weaken encryption protocols.
The issue of encryption and surveillance has been a sticking point for the Coalition. The new laws seek to modernise police powers in the age of smartphones and the internet but Mr Phair says more legislation was not necessarily the answer.
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Theoretically the legislation would make it easier for law enforcement to get that content. When you send a message over an encrypted messaging service like WhatsApp, for example, the message is encrypted as it goes over the network and decrypted when it gets to the intended recipient. It remains to be seen how cooperative tech giant will be. In the past, Facebook has complied with about 67 per cent of requests from Australian police. The issue of encryption and surveillance has been a sticking point for the Coalition government in recent years.
In a common line from the government, Mr Taylor said technologies such as encryption were being used by organised criminals, terrorists and paedophiles to evade detection. We must ensure our laws reflect the rapid take-up of secure online communications by those who seek to do us harm.
Agencies like ASIO or the Australian Federal Police will have the ability to request telecommunication and tech companies help them with their investigations. Mr Taylor said tech and telecommunication companies could also be asked to help locate a suspected criminal. Under the law, Australian government agencies could compel companies to provide technical information such as design specifications to help in an investigation, remove electronic protections, assist in accessing material on a device subject to a warrant and even build or install software or equipment that could help authorities gather information.
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Chapter 3: Telephone tapping by the New South Wales Police
Don't have an account? Latest figures show a dip in warrants for listening devices with police opting more for phone taps. Credit: Fairfax Media. Intelligence Counter-Terrorism and Major Events Command Inspector Peter Doyle said telecommunication intercepts had several key advantages over more traditional methods.
Also note that a cell battery will lose the ability to stay charged as it gets older. Telephone tapping often must be authorized by a court , and is normally only approved when evidence shows it is not possible to detect criminal or subversive activity in less intrusive ways; [ citation needed ] often the law and regulations require that the crime investigated must be at least of a certain severity. The usefulness of these devices is in question, but in order for any such device to be of any use in detecting a wiretap, it will need to be able to detect electrical or signal changes over the phone line being tested. Some states distinguish between electronic and in-person communication. Inspector Doyle said he wasn't aware of any particular increase in crims moving away from electronics and phones but it was "always a risk". Note: mobile spyware is slightly different from computer spyware.
You're not entering a premises to put a device in. Inspector Doyle said another key advantage involved the ability to track criminals who had moved interstate or even while on trips over the border.
Figures tabled in Queensland parliament on Tuesday showed just 25 warrants for traditional surveillance devices applied for and granted in , compared with warrants for phone taps in the latest available year, Inspector Doyle said the taps gave officers phone call recordings, text messages, the time and details of the communications and were "essential" in tracking and prosecuting organised crime.
In , older-style surveillance devices led to 74 arrests, with arrests stemming from phone taps in the previous year. The police reports stressed the arrests were not necessarily linked to warrants in the same financial year and in many cases carried on from previous periods.
Gold Coast-based criminologist and former cop Terry Goldsworthy said phone taps were much simpler, less labour intensive and increasingly useful with the ubiquity of mobile phones.
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