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

 


Draft intelligence community legislation released

Rt Hon John Key
Prime Minister

6 May 2013 Media Statement

Draft intelligence community legislation released
Prime Minister John Key today released a final draft of legislation to clarify the functions of the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB), and to strengthen the oversight regime governing New Zealand’s intelligence community.

The final draft of the omnibus Bill – the Government Communications Security Bureau and Related Legislation Amendment Bill – encompasses amendments to the Government Communications Security Bureau Act 2003, the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security Act 1996 and the Intelligence and Security Committee Act 1996.

The draft Bill follows a compliance review, which focused on the GCSB, as well as a wider review of other related intelligence legislation.

“The compliance review of the GCSB, conducted by Rebecca Kitteridge, showed there were difficulties in the legal interpretation of the GCSB Act,” says Mr Key.

“Ms Kitteridge’s review found the GCSB Act 2003 is not, and probably never was, fit for purpose.

“It is essential that an agency which is exercising intrusive powers has a clear legal framework to operate within.

“It’s also essential the oversight regime governing such an agency is strong enough to mean the public can have confidence the agency is acting within the law.

“The responsible thing to do is to clarify legislation so it is clear what the GCSB can and cannot do; then it can get on with the important job of protecting the security of New Zealanders,” says Mr Key.

“The draft Bill I am releasing today will, if enacted, help the GCSB to get on with the job of helping New Zealand public and private sector entities deal with the growing threat of cyber-attack.

“The GCSB will require an authorisation from the Responsible Minister and the Commissioner of Security Warrants when its cyber security and information assurance functions are being performed in relation to the communications of New Zealanders.

“The operating environment for New Zealand’s intelligence agencies has changed enormously over the past decade. In large part, this is due to the rapid evolution of technology in areas like cyber security and the threat of cyber-attacks.

“It’s vital that legislation in this area is fit for purpose and keeps pace with changes in the operating environment, while also safeguarding the rights of law-abiding New Zealanders,” says Mr Key.

The draft Bill also makes it clear the GCSB can provide support to certain named agencies – the New Zealand Police, the New Zealand Defence Force and the New Zealand Security Intelligence Service (NZSIS).

The GCSB will only be able to provide that support when those agencies are acting within their own lawful duties.

“This means the GCSB will be able to provide support under the right conditions and oversight, including in relation to New Zealanders,” says Mr Key.

In addition to the GCSB Act amendments, Mr Key says the draft Bill also significantly strengthens the oversight regime for New Zealand’s intelligence agencies to ensure it is strong enough to inspire public confidence.

“The Bill modernises legislation governing the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security to make the office more proactive, and at the same time the Government intends to increase the resourcing of the Inspector- General’s office.

“Changes to the Intelligence and Security Committee Act would also give that committee greater oversight and accountability of the intelligence community,” Mr Key says.

Under the draft legislation, the GCSB Act will retain its three main functions of information assurance and cyber security; foreign intelligence; and cooperation and assistance to other agencies.

However, these functions will be clarified and updated so that:

• Information assurance and cyber security will include cooperation, advice and help to both public and private sector organisations;
• Foreign intelligence will remain broadly as is; and
• Cooperation and assistance to other agencies means the GCSB will be able to assist the NZ Defence Force, Police and NZSIS, but only when those entities are performing their lawful duties.
“These changes will ensure the GCSB is on a sound footing to keep doing the job the Government expects it to do in the interests of New Zealanders,” says Mr Key.

It is the Government’s intention to introduce and debate the final Bill later this week, subject to the House schedule. After passing its First Reading the Bill will go to the Intelligence and Security Committee for submissions.

ENDS

Note to Editors: Final draft Bill attached.
wstGovernment_Communications_Security_Bureau_and_Rela_3.pdf

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Patience: Drive Safe

Be patient before passing is the AA's message for drivers this Labour weekend.

"People taking crazy risks to get past other vehicles is one of the most dangerous things on the road,” says AA spokesperson Dylan Thomsen.

“The weather is looking good for the long weekend so the roads will be busy. Unfortunately, that also increases the chances of people getting frustrated and trying a risky passing manoeuvre. When they get past, there will probably be more traffic up ahead anyway so it won’t get people there faster.” More>>

 
 

Parliament Today:

Employment Relations Bill: Govt Strains To Get Tea Break Law Through

The Government has been left with egg on its face - failing to get its much-vaunted, but hugely unpopular, meal break law passed in the first week of its new term, Labour spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says. More>>

ALSO:

Guns: Police Association Call To Arm Police Full Time

"The new minister gave his view, that Police do not need to be armed, while standing on the forecourt of parliament. The dark irony was that the interview followed immediately after breaking news of a gunman running amok in the Canadian parliament in Ottawa..." More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Tokenism Of New Zealand's Role Against Islamic State

Our contribution against IS will be to send SAS forces to train the Iraqis? That’s like offering trainers to General Custer just as the 7th cavalry reached the Little Big Horn. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Shell And Todd Caught Drilling Without Approval

Multi-national oil company Shell’s New Zealand arm and local energy giant Todd Energy have breached the new law governing New Zealand’s Exclusive Economic Zone, the Environmental Protection Authority says in an Oct. 10 document released by the Green Party. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Pharmac, Gough Whitlam And Sleater-Kinney

We’re not at the outset of these negotiations. The outset was six years ago, and negotiators were hoping to have some sort of ‘framework’ deal finished in time for the APEC meeting in a few weeks’ time. These ‘extreme’ positions are what we’ve reached near the intended end of the negotiations… More>>

ALSO:

PM Of Many Hats: Questions, No Answers On Whale Oil

Dr RUSSEL NORMAN (Co-Leader – Green) to the Prime Minister: How many times since November 2008 has he spoken with blogger Cameron Slater on the phone and how many times, if any, has he texted him?
Rt Hon JOHN KEY (Prime Minister): None in my capacity as Prime Minister. More>>

ALSO:

Aussie Investigation Dropped: Call On Minister McCully To Pursue The Case Of Balibo Five

West Papua Action is deeply concerned at the lack of any clear outcome from the Australian Federal Police inquiry into the 1975 deaths of the ‘Balibo Five’ including NZ journalist Gary Cunningham. More>>

ALSO:

'Feed The Kids' Bill: Metiria Turei To Lead Fight On Feeding Hungry Children

Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei is urging all political parties to support the Feed the Kids Bill which she inherited today from Mana leader Hone Harawira. More>>

ALSO:

Parliament Today: State Opening Of Parliament

The House sat at 10.30am on Tuesday before MPs were summoned to hear the Speech from the Throne in the Legislative Council Chamber. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news