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[FYI] Vom Austritt Australiens aus der zivilisierten Welt?


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Orwellian Nightmare Down Under? 

by Stewart Taggart  

3:00 a.m. 4.Dec.1999 PST 

SYDNEY, Australia -- Any data seem different on your computer today? 

If you're in Australia, the government has the ability to modify your 
files. Its cyber spooks have been given legal power not only to 
monitor private computers around the country, but to change the data 
they contain.  

The new powers are contained in a bill passed by Australia's 
parliament late last month (the Australian Security Intelligence 
Organization Legislation Amendment 1999). They now await only the 
largely ceremonial assent of Australia's governor general before 
becoming law.  

"These are really untested waters," says Chris Connolly, a vocal 
Australian privacy advocate. "I don't think there's any example 
anywhere else in the world that's comparable."  

Under the new law, Australia's attorney general can authorize legal 
hacking into private computer systems, as well as copying or altering 
data, as long as he has reasonable cause to believe it's relevant to 
a "security matter."  

The keyboard spies will come from the Australian Security 
Intelligence Organization (ASIO), Australia's equivalent of the 
Central Intelligence Agency. Catherine Fitzpatrick, spokeswoman for 
Attorney General Daryl Williams, said the law merely "modernizes" an 
existing 1979 statute that previously governed ASIO, and sorely 
needed updating.  

"This just brings ASIO's powers in line with new technologies," she  
said. "It doesn't give them increased powers at all." 


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A GIANT data warehouse containing the personal and financial
                  details of almost every Australian is being 
constructed by a United
                  States company and will be operational by 

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