Australians are Fighting Data Retention Laws

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Alvin Bryan

Alvin Bryan is a freelance writer and online privacy enthusiast enthusiast currently contributing quality tips and troubleshooting on personal VPN services, and online privacy and security news. You can also find him on Google +.

Governments of all kinds throughout history have incited fear in their people. They are supposed to provide a stable foundation, but can’t help doing this because of their greed for power. Their goal is not to uphold the rights of citizens but to further their own aims. And these often entail attacks on the very civil liberties that they are sworn to protect. The US and UK have hidden behind false claims of national security dangers. Now Australia is getting in on the illegal spy game. But Aussies won’t have it, and they are fighting the proposed data retention bill.

Australian Data Retention Bill

Data RetentionThere is a bill that is going to be presented to the Australian parliament next week. It has no name yet, but is an unmistakable attempt to curb civil rights. The data retention bill is being rushed through parliament, the last of a set of three. The bill’s proponents claim that the bills will help the government protect Australians. We see them as just another way to foster a culture of fear of terrorism so that people will allow the government to take away their freedoms. Two bills have already made their way through parliament – the National Security Amendment Bill and the Counter-Terrorism Legislation Amendment (Foreign Fighters) Bill. The trio will give the government the right to ignore constitutional freedoms and turn Australia into yet another repressive surveillance state.

The proposed data retention law is going to give the government more mass surveillance powers. Internet providers in Australia will have to provide records of the personal details of their subscribers. This means tracking their online activities and keeping personal information available to law enforcement for two years. The world that George Orwell described in his novel is becoming a reality. But forewarned and forearmed, average Australian Internet users launched a campaign, Stop the Spies. Their purpose is to reach out to others regarding this threat. They want to make sure everyone knows what’s in store for them. And they want to equip people with the information and means necessary to fight it. Like many other successful net campaigns, this one is also starting with an online email form where anyone can appeal to their representatives to respect their right to privacy online. The website also links people to various social media platforms that can be used to strengthen and develop support for the campaign.

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