DEC 03, 2018 | AUSTRALIA
BSA Opposes Rushed Action on Australia's Assistance and Access Bill
CANBERRA – 3 DECEMBER 2018 – BSA | The Software Alliance calls upon the Australian Parliament to allow the Committee on Intelligence and Security to run its proper course so that it can give full consideration to the significant concerns associated with the current draft of the Telecommunications and Other Legislation Amendment (Assistance and Access) Bill 2018.
During the hearings to date, cybersecurity experts, industry, and civil society have all identified numerous concerns and adverse consequences that would result from the current draft of the bill.
BSA believes that the bill, in its current form, would compromise data privacy and security of individuals and businesses, impact public trust in encryption and encryption software, and introduce risk to the integrity of the global digital economy.
The bill would create broad authorities for law enforcement and security agencies to mandate modifications or disruptions in core information technologies with limited judicial oversight. Addressing these concerns requires that the Committee take steps to strengthen judicial authorization and review mechanisms in the bill, clarify and limit the bill’s scope and the circumstances in which its authority can be exercised, and limit the bill’s extraterritorial reach. These concerns represent issues that are core to both due process and the vibrancy of Australia’s technology industry, and should not be dismissed lightly.
Accordingly, while BSA supports the Australian government’s right to defend the nation and assist security agencies in protecting Australian communities, we remain opposed to the bill in its current form. We urge the Parliament to avoid rushing this measure to completion before concerns can be addressed in a deliberate, conscientious manner.