Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

Committee Disregards Concern About Email Snooping

Committee Disregards Concern About Email Snooping Bill

22 July 2001

Green Police spokesperson Keith Locke has criticised the report of the Law and Order Select Committee for disregarding public concern about giving police and intelligence agencies to right to intercept emails and hack into people's computers.

Mr Locke represented the Greens during hearings of the Crimes Amendment Bill (No 6), but without a vote because he is not a regular member of the committee.

"Despite the many privacy issues raised in public submissions, the committee simply bought the government line that the new powers would improve crime fighting and intelligence gathering," said Mr Locke.

"All the constraints I suggested, based on public submissions, were tossed out the window.

"The police provided no evidence to justify having the new power to remotely access computers. The Privacy Commissioner had pointed out that police can already look at the contents of a computer during a search of premises. The major privacy implications of allowing police to secretly access your computer were swept aside by the committee.

"The committee treated interception of emails as simply basically a modern version of mail interception, despite the evidence in submissions that electronic interception is conducted on a vastly greater scale and affects the privacy of a huge number of people.

"While the legislation does provide for some controls, thousands of messages, particularly through the Waihopai station run by the Government Communications Security Bureau, will be intercepted without a warrant.



"The key word trawling of emails and faxes, as used at Waihopai, will ensnare many innocent people, a point made by several submitters.

"The committee rejected my attempts to introduce best practice constraints from overseas, and threw out my suggestion for auditing police interception warrants, based on the procedures of the Federal Ombudsman's office in Australia.

"It also turned down my amendment to inform suspects against whom no charges are laid that their communications have been intercepted, in case it has some subsequent impact on their life. The United States FBI has such a notification procedure.

"The committee seemed anxious not to indicate any lack of trust in intelligence agencies. Rather than accept my proposal that intelligence agencies be subject to the Privacy Act provision that personal information be kept no longer than necessary, the committee has reported that this is already "current SIS policy", and recommended no change in the law.

"Why bother to have laws at all if we simply trust secret agencies to do the right thing?

"I also asked the committee to support consequential amendments to the Security Intelligence Act and the Government Communications Security Bureau Bill, currently before the House, to introduce the additional constraints currently applying to police interception warrants. This was not supported."

Mr Locke said the Committee's report is a slap in the face to the Privacy Commissioner, the Law Commission, the Council for Civil Liberties and all those other submitters concerned with the privacy concerns of the bill.

"It doesn't bode well for the future of civil liberties in New Zealand.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Terror in NZ: Mosques Attacked in Christchurch

• There have been two attacks at the Masjid Al Noor Mosque next to Hagley Park, and at the Linwood Masjid Mosque in the suburb of Linwood, Christchurch
• Police commissioner says 50 confirmed dead in Christchurch terrorist attacks. One man charged with murder appeared in court on Saturday, two more apprehended - working to understand their involvement
• PM Jacinda Ardern has described it as a "terrorist attack" by those holding extremist views. She says NZ's gun laws will change.
• The national security threat level has been increased from low to high.
• Commissioner Bush said there were explosive devices attached to one vehicle that were stopped by police and these have been made safe by Defence Force personnel.

More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Effective Changes To Gun Laws And The SIS
Already, the government has signalled that its response to the Christchurch mosque shootings will proceed on two main fronts (a) changes to the gun laws (b) changes to the current surveillance behaviours of the Police and the SIS... More>>

.

 
 

"Grabbed And Struck In The Face": Greens Co-Leader Attacked While Walking To Work

Green Party co-leader James Shaw was the victim of an unprovoked attack when he was walking to work in Wellington. More>>

ALSO:

████████ ████ ███: Latest OIA Statistics Released

The latest statistics cover 110 agencies that collectively completed 18,106 official information requests between July and December 2018, a 16.4% increase on the 15,551 requests for the previous six months. More>>

ALSO:

'Hit And Run' Inquiry: New Legal Action Over Secrecy

The lawyer representing the Afghan villagers in the inquiry into Operation Burnham has launched legal proceedings calling for a judicial review in the investigation. More>>

ALSO:

From Hydro Plan To...: Mokihinui River Land To Join Kahurangi National Park

A total of 64,400 hectares of conservation land in the Mokihinui River catchment on the West Coast north of Westport, including 15 km of riverbed, is being added to Kahurangi National Park. “Adding this area, roughly half the size of Auckland City, to Kahurangi is the largest addition of land to an existing national park in New Zealand’s history,” Eugenie Sage said. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Shane Jones (And A Huawei Update)

For better and worse, this is a small country... any major business initiative aiming to benefit the Maori community in Northland is likely to come across the radar of a local Maori politician called Shane Jones. More>>

ALSO:

National's Political Donations: SFO To Investigate Jami-Lee Ross' Complaint

Independent MP Jami-Lee Ross says he understands the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) investigation into a complaint on a National Party donation is looking at tracing the money back through different bank accounts. More>>

ALSO:

Pike River: Drift Re-Entry Scheduled For 3 May

Minister Responsible for Pike River Re-entry Andrew Little has announced that in light of the current state of preparations, the scheduled date to commence re-entering and recovering the access tunnel to the Pike River Mine (the drift) will be Friday 3rd May. More>>

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels