Our private data accessed 800 times a day

In the ongoing data saga that has engulfed the Western world in the past weeks, Clare Blumer has more sobering news on the Australian front:

It happens all the time – roughly 800 times a day, on last year’s records.

Somewhere in Australia, a government bureaucrat – no-one especially senior; say, a Centrelink agent – fills in a form, gets a signature from someone else in the department, and becomes authorised to check out a member of the public’s phone records (which numbers that person has called, how long they spoke, and where they were when they placed the call), and then their email history (who they’ve emailed, and when, and the IP addresses used). No warrant required, no notice given.

It’s all legal – and has been happening since 2007.

The IPA has been following these breaches to our privacy closely, and the worrying increase of state surveillance.

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