The Government and Opposition colluded today to block a request for a statement by the Attorney General on implications for Australia of the PRISM surveillance scandal in the US. Labor and the Coalition combined their numbers to block the move.
"The US National Security Agency is using PRISM to conduct warrantless surveillance through the servers of companies including Apple, Microsoft, Google and Facebook. Australian agencies are probably receiving information through the PRISM program, accessing emails, audio and video chats, photographs, documents, connection logs and location data.
"The whole world is in uproar. The last refuge of complacency seems to be in the Party Rooms of the Labor, Liberal and National Parties."
To defend civil liberties at the national level, Senator Ludlam today introduced amendments to the Telecommunications Interception and Access Act to ensure government agencies must get a warrant to request telecommunications data.
"Australian law enforcement agencies - not including ASIO - made 293,501 requests for telecommunications data in 2011-12 without a warrant. Under the current law, that's entirely legal and our Bill will close this dangerous loophole."
Senator Ludlam's PRISM motion: http://scott-ludlam.greensmps.org.au/content/media-releases/motion-prism
Media release on "Get A Warrant" Bill: http://greensmps.org.au/content/media-releases/get-warrant-%E2%80%93-gre...
"Get a warrant" Bill, Speech and Explanatory Memorandum http://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Bills_Legislation/Bills_Sea...