Australia now has encryption-busting laws as Labor capitulates

Labor has backed down completely on its opposition to the Assistance and Access Bill, and in the process has been totally outfoxed by a government that can barely control the floor of Parliament.

After proposing a number of amendments to the Bill, which Labor party members widely called out as being inappropriate in the House of Representatives on Thursday morning, the Labor Party has dropped its proposals, allowing the Bill to pass through Parliament before the summer break.

“Let’s just make Australians safer over Christmas,” Bill Shorten said on Thursday evening.

“It’s all about putting people first.”

Shorten said Labor is letting the Bill through provided the government agrees to amendments in the new year.

Under the new laws, Australian government agencies would be able to issue three kinds of notices:

  • Technical Assistance Notices (TAN), which are compulsory notices for a communication provider to use an interception capability they already have;
  • Technical Capability Notices (TCN), which are compulsory notices for a communication provider to build a new interception capability, so that it can meet subsequent Technical Assistance Notices; and
  • Technical Assistance Requests (TAR), which have been described by experts as the most dangerous of all.

The final vote in the Senate to pass the Bill was 44-12, with Labor and the Coalition voting for it.

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Source: ZDNet