Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Privacy, Digital Economy at Risk From Spy Agency Dysfunction

MEDIA RELEASE

July 2, 2014

Privacy And Digital Economy at Risk From Spy Agency Dysfunction

A damning report on the shameful state of New Zealand’s intelligence services highlights why an overhaul is needed now, says the Internet Party.

The State Services Commission’s independent report into the country’s intelligence community – the Government Communications Securit yBureau, the Security Intelligence Service and the strategic agencies operating out of the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet – paints a gloomy picture of dysfunction.

Agencies lacked clear priorities, distrusted each other and tolerated poor performance. The report also highlighted New Zealand's reliance on the United States-led Five Eyes network.

“The public rightly has no confidence how our intelligence agencies operate,” said Internet Party leader Laila Harré. “Even the SSC thinks the GCSB is less transparent than its Five Eyes partners. It shows that our intelligence agencies aren’t operating intelligently. They’re not sure what they should be doing, and what they are doing isn’t up to scratch.”

A frightening lack of oversight and accountability demanded an immediate end-to-end review of New Zealand’s intelligence operations.

“It’s something that should have happened when the Kitteridge Report came out last year but, instead, the Prime Minister – the man in charge of our intelligence services – rushed through dodgy legislation to paper over some serious illegalities and shortcomings in how these agencies operate. Kiwis are now having their personal information and online communications collected by Government spies who seemingly have no idea of what they’re doing, or even why, and that information is being handed over to foreign agencies without public scrutiny.

“Our basic right to privacy is under attack. Given the GCSB’s ineptitude, we are concerned with its ability to undertake the additional roles given to it by the change in law with the GCSB Bill last year. In particular, the GCSB is now charged with making decisions about the design and equipment used by the country’s telecommunications operators. That’s going to be a real drag on our digital economy and undermine the trust that overseas customers place in our technology services.

“The time’s come to finally shine some much-needed light on how our intelligence agencies operate, as well as their relationships with each other and overseas agencies. There has to be stronger oversight and action from the Prime Minister when it comes to his department’s performance. Poor performance and a lack of public trust cannot be tolerated.

“We will put in place an independent, cross-party oversight committee, chaired by the Leader of the Opposition and including independent non-political experts, to ensure intelligence agencies are working for the good of all New Zealanders and the country’s sovereign interests.”

The Internet Party has promised to repeal the GCSB Bill (2013) and the Telecommunications (Interception Capability and Security) Bill as priorities. The Internet Party will also immediately review intelligence co-operation agreements with a view to exiting the Five Eyes network.

“It’s not acceptable for New Zealand intelligence agencies to rely on a network that doesn’t have the interests of New Zealanders at its core, least of all agencies that clearly don’t know what they’re doing or why,” said Ms Harré.

ENDS


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Also, Loan Interest: Productivity Commission On Tertiary Education

Key recommendations include better quality control; making it easier for students to transfer between courses; abolishing University Entrance; enabling tertiary institutions to own and control their assets; making it easier for new providers to enter the system; and facilitating more and faster innovation by tertiary education providers... More>>

ALSO:

Higher Payments: Wellington Regional Council Becomes A Living Wage Employer

Councillor Sue Kedgley said she was delighted that the Wellington Regional Council unanimously adopted her motion to become a Living Wage employer, making it the first regional council in New Zealand to do so. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Images:
Dame Patsy Reddy Sworn In As Governor-General

This morning Dame Patsy Reddy was sworn in as the New Zealand Realm’s 21st Governor-General. The ceremony began with a pōwhiri to welcome Dame Patsy and her husband Sir David Gascoigne to Parliament. More>>

ALSO:

Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>

ALSO:

With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>

ALSO:

Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news