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Government and Political Conspiracies

IDENTITY CARDS A GLOBAL PERSPECTIVE

Throughout time, there have been countless government and political conspiracies that have kept us wondering. This forum is dedicated to that very topic. Got a conspiracy theory of your own? Post it, and try to back it up as best you can!

Postby rath » Mon Feb 01, 2010 9:43 am

Electronic identity (ID) cards have made alarming progress towards becoming universal around the world.

...one ID number is the key to access all services and also all databases... When numerous databases are linked together by means of a common interface, in this case ID numbers, they effectively function as a single "meta-database".


Already, over 2.2 billion people, or 33 per cent of the world's population, have been issued
with "smart" ID cards. Of those cards, over 900 million have biometric facial and fingerprint systems.

On present plans, over 85 per cent of the world's population will have smart ID cards by 2012. Most of the remaining population won't have escaped: largely, they are already enrolled
in earlier-generation ID systems, often in repressive states such as Myanmar
(Burma).

Understandably, campaigns against the introduction of ID cards have tended to play up the problems with ID systems, presenting them as being unworkable and creating unmanageable problems with privacy invasion, fraud, unauthorised database access, organised crime, unreliability of biometric recognition, etc. As a result, a substantial number of people believe mandatory ID cards "just won't happen".

It's long past time to stop burying our heads in the sand. There are no obstacles to the worldwide introduction of mandatory electronic ID cards.

All those problems with ID systems may be real, but they are not enough to stop implementation, primarily because these are problems that will affect people as individuals, not their governments—our problem, not theirs.

There has been hardly any meaningful debate about one of the biggest issues of our time.
It's also time to look at what ID systems are really intended to do, not at the public justification for them. Since governments probably always knew that ID cards wouldn't stop terrorism, organised crime, ID theft, fraud, etc., there has to be some other reason for their introduction—and it appears to be a reason that governments don't want to own up to in public.

A Coordinated International ID Agenda?

Perhaps we can learn more if we look at what is going on around the world.

Interestingly, nobody seems to have published a comprehensive or reliable
survey of worldwide ID schemes, so a survey had to be compiled for this
article, What stands out from this survey, incomplete as it may be, is that advanced
electronic ID card systems are coming to some of the poorest nations in the
world, some in chaos, civil war and starvation, both small and large countries.

They are coming to nations with vastly divergent cultures, to nations that are
almost completely pre-industrialised and underdeveloped, and coming first
to almost all Islamic nations.

The few that will not have advanced electronic population registration will be in a tiny minority. This is all to happen by the end of 2012.

For example, on 25 June 2009, India announced it is pressing
ahead with the introduction of universal biometric ID cards, to be completed
by 2011—to register nearly 1.2 billion people within just 18 months.

However, there are grey areas. For example, in some states, such as Mozambique and Zambia, there are biometric ID cards for voter registration which aren't officially national ID cards but nonetheless have registered the population.

"Election cards" tend to become national ID cards immediately after an election, as in Haiti. (How did
introducing ID cards get linked to "bringing in democracy"?) The USA would probably be in the grey
area due to the uncertainty (deliberately not clarified) about the Real ID Act, Canada due to proposals for biometric "enhanced drivers licenses", and Australia due to the uncertain status of the Access Card. Any uncertainty gets put into perspective by the "big picture": ID cards are coming, almost everywhere.

The simultaneous introduction of very similar ID card systems in so many nations seems more than a
coincidence. If it were purely a matter of nations taking their own initiative to upgrade systems, this would happen over a longer timetable as nations periodically updated systems once every couple of
decades. Does this timetable indicate unseen international
pressure applied to nations to adopt ID cards?

In the process of researching the list, something interesting came out. The plans to introduce a national ID card system in Uganda were announced in a memorandum of understanding, dated 20 June 2008, sent to the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
The impression is that the IMF was involved in the decision long before the people of Uganda were
consulted about their national ID card scheme.

Has the IMF required nations to adopt biometric ID cards, on the pretext of instigating financial regulation and preventing fraud and money laundering? Again and again, in the public description of the alleged benefits of biometric ID systems, the reasons given include the benefit to the banking system, in preventing fraud, and allowing the poor to have access
to the banking system.

Several nations (e.g., India) have mentioned the need to confirm that aid gets to the intended recipients and is not lost in fraud—again, something which a body such as the IMF might see as a justifiable reason to promote or require biometric ID, but other people would see as a mere pretext for "policy laundering".

In a different example of western promotion, the European Union (EU) has financially sponsored the
introduction of biometric ID cards in the Democratic Republic of Congo, allegedly to help promote peace by tracking down ex-soldiers and ex-fighters.

A similar logic has been applied to a biometric scheme in Somalia.
Grotesquely, biometric ID cards are coming to Rwanda. ID cards were a major tool in the Rwandan
genocide. Imagine how much more effective the genocide could have been with a computerised
population register and an ID system with biometrics to prevent fraud or evasion. Rwanda's experience is an horrific illustration of how lethal ID cards can be in a nation in civil war, and raises uncomfortable questions about western involvement, as does the situation in Congo.

Policy Harmonisation in the EU, UK and USA The worldwide introduction of ID cards is merely the
visible witness of an invisible process. Policies that profoundly affect our lives and take away our freedoms are worked out in secret international deals.
In July 2005, during its sixmonth rotation in the Presidency of the EU, the United Kingdom introduced a proposal for biometric ID cards for Europe despite the fact that it had no power to do so under the EU treaties at that time.

Legalities being no obstacle, this subsequently evolved into binding EU policy in the Hague Programme on justice and security. However, policies introducing ID cards, evolved in secret, go far beyond identification and security, as described by Tony Bunyan of Statewatch in an article in the Guardian ("The surveillance society is an EU-wide issue", 28 May 2009; includes quotations from Bunyan's
Statewatch report, "The Shape of Things to Come").

ID cards are only one tool, enabling a much larger scheme to track and record the life of every individual; Bunyan calls this the "digital tsunami".

'Every object the individual uses, every transaction they make and almost everywhere they go will create a detailed digital record. This will generate a wealth of information for public security organisations', leading to behaviour being predicted and assessed by 'machines' (their term)
which will issue orders to officers on the spot. The proposal presages the mass gathering of personal data on travel, bank details, mobile phone locations, health records, internet usage, criminal records however minor, fingerprints and digital pictures that can be data-mined
and applied to different scenario[s]—boarding a plane, behaviour on the Tube or taking part in a protest.


But this isn't just coming to Europe, as Bunyan explains, because the USA and Europe will share similar policies and practices in an agenda of policy harmonisation:

It is proposed that by 2014 the EU needs to create a 'Euro- Atlantic area of cooperation with the USA in the field of freedom, security and justice'. This would go far beyond current co-operation and mean that policies affecting the liberties and rights of everyone in Europe would not be determined in London or Brussels but in secret EU–US meetings.

Was this a response to 9/11? No, emphatically not. We can say this because some of these schemes have a published history and timeline dating from much earlier, e.g., Taiwan, 1997, and India, 1999. We can trace a continuing pursuit of ID-based databases back to the Australia Card, which was defeated in 1987. We can also say with certainty that EU–US cooperation on security pre-dates 9/11, as does EU development of security databases which have been applied to political protestors.

What Do ID Cards Do?
The new cards are like a high-tech "glue", an interface, joining together all the different state databases and linking their information together. This is the significance of the "multifunctional"
identity function of the new cards: one ID number is the key to access all services and also all databases. One card, one number, tracks a person across multiple activities, across their whole life and everything they do—employment, tax, health, everything. When numerous databases are linked together by means of a common interface, in this case ID numbers, they effectively function as a single "meta-database".


In the Guardian (30 September 2003), home affairs editor Alan Travis wrote that the "citizen information register" in Britain will "bring together all the existing information held by the government" on its 58 million residents:
It will include their name, address, date of birth, sex, and a unique personal number to form a 'more accurate and transparent' database than existing national insurance, tax, medical, passport, voter and driving licence records... The decision to give the go-ahead to the national population register without any apparent need for new legislation or any public debate is in sharp contrast to the intense cabinet debate now taking place over the...identity
card scheme...

...The scheme is a joint project between the Office of National Statistics and the Treasury... The idea was developed by the Treasury's public services productivity panel—a group of senior business people and public services managers...
[The Home Office] admitted a national identity card scheme will have to be 'underpinned by a database of all UK residents' and asked for views on whether the citizens information register should be used for this purpose...

The Indian ID scheme is another major example. According to an article in the Hindu (26 June 2009):
...the UID [Unique IDentification] numbers and the database will be linked to agencies such as the Election Commission of India and the Income Tax Department, which...issue...voters photo identity
cards... In addition, it will be used for providing services under government
schemes such as the public distribution system, and the National Rural Employment Guarantee
Scheme for families living below the poverty line...and for delivering financial and other assistance to the needy.

This is the new model for egovernment around the world.
Historically, this isn't the first time we have seen systems like this. It is very similar in concept to the Nazi ID system, as it finally evolved, with a Reich Personnel Number to link all other
databases. The system of compiling the initial population register from records in existing, earlier
databases is, again, very similar to Nazi practice.

Why should this be significant? Why should there be any big deal about the government collecting together data that it already has?

As reported by Henry Porter in his Guardian blog (25 February 2009):
'Once an individual has been assigned a unique index number, it is possible to accurately retrieve data across numerous databases and build a picture of that individual's life that was not authorised in the original consent for data collection,' says Sir David Omand in a report for the Institute for Public Policy Research... In 2006 Sir David Varney, the head of Transformational Government, predicted that the state would know 'a deep truth about the citizen based on their behaviour, experience, beliefs, needs or desires'.


Loyalty Cards and Data-Gathering

Let's not talk about a police state, let's talk about supermarket loyalty cards. There isn't much difference between them in terms of technology, and modern ID cards seem to be close descendants of loyalty cards, intended for a similar purpose: gathering information about people. To be able to track someone, first you need to identify them.

Corporations want to know as much as they can about their customers, for marketing purposes, and have made an incredible investment in infrastructure for gathering and analysing data about them. By 2004, Wal-Mart had gathered 460 terabytes of information about customers,
or more than twice the total information on the Internet.1 The majority of this data came from
loyalty cards.

Governments have adopted electronic ID cards because stores have shown what powerful and
effective technology they are—not merely effective, but cost-effective.

Stores have demonstrated that they can track and profile their customers to find their spending habits, their weaknesses and their suggestibility, what advertising works on them.
The technology they use not only had to prove it could work, but also had to prove it could pay for
itself. If supermarket corporations invest as much as they do, the technology has to be
very effective.

Powerful and effective software, such as ChoicePoint and LexisNexis, has been developed for analysing stores' loyalty card data. Now we find some of those systems in use at the FBI to shortlist suspects.

2. Governments have realised that this same profiling technology works and can also be applied to finding terrorists, "extremists", political dissidents or any other category of interest to the state. Some of those companies also help in data-gathering.

When the US government obtained personal data about voters in 11 different Latin American states, for unspecified purposes, that data was obtained by private corporations including ChoicePoint.
It has been reported that the majority of US intelligence data-gathering is outsourced and that
about 70 per cent of the budget goes to private corporations.


Although the majority of this spending goes to military-defence corporations such as SAIC and Booz
Allen Hamilton, consumer corporations also take their place. So, do we see an evolving symbiosis between government and private corporations, where they share technology and tools and cooperate in data-gathering?

RFID: A Powerful Tracking Technology

One of the tools that has migrated from loyalty cards to ID cards is RFID (radio-frequency ID). It's in the new Chinese ID card and it's going into all the new "smart" ID cards.

RFID is a tracking system, originally developed to track stock in the supply chain and in warehouses. Tiny chips allow a serial number and potential other data to be read from a distance of up to several feet. When an RFID-tagged item passes a reader, its number is recorded.

When RFID readers are connected to a network, it is possible to compile a record of the movements of an object (or person) by listing the times and places when and where the RFID
number was recorded.

RFID in loyalty cards allows the cardholder's name and all the personal information on the card to be read from a distance of several feet, without the cardholder's knowledge.

Using RFID, stores can read your identity from your loyalty card as soon as you walk in, without your
realising. Now we are being issued with government "loyalty
cards" which will identify us by RFID.

The stores realised that, by placing readers at various locations, they could use RFID to track customers' movements—to see, for example, the products they looked at but did not buy, in addition to those they did.

RFID has an obvious application: the identities of everyone in a crowd could be collected by one mingling plain-clothes policeman with an RFID reader.


Very quickly, the stores also realised that RFID in products such as clothing items could be used to track the movements of the people who bought them. Unlike bar codes, RFID identifies each item with a unique serial number, differentiating identical items.

The chain stores' huge databases allowed them to keep a tally of which objects had been bought by which customers—putting names to RFID serial numbers.
This extra information was very powerful in "profiling" customers; for example, they started to get data about who was standing next to them, and they could guess whether customers shopped alone, with their husbands or wives, or with someone else.

Soon the stores will be able to read the RFID serial number in your national ID card in much the same way, and governments are going to sell ID confirmation to cross-reference the serial number on your ID card with your name and address. Stores spend a lot of money acquiring data, so knowing customers' names and addresses with certainty has really got to be worth something. Customers will no longer be able to hide their identities or give false names on loyalty cards.

When Employers Use Profiling Some corporations already apply psychometric profiling to their staff and potential employees to get a workforce with the "right" profile, the "right" attitudes. Imagine how RFID tracking and profiling could facilitate this, profiling individuals' whole lives. By enabling ubiquitous tracking and profiling, could ID systems herald a corporate culture of conformity, with enforced redundancy for those who don't fit the right profile?

There have been widespread examples of employers discriminating against individuals on the grounds of political or union affiliations.
The UK Information Commissioner's Office found that many very large and respectable companies had
engaged in illegal practices to do this.
What would happen if employers used data gleaned from ID systems and social networks analysis to profile staff, to find their friends and associates and any affiliations? What would it mean to society and political culture if corporate employers could identify and discriminate against political and union activists, making it hard for them to get a job? Would that be compatible with democracy?

Emeritus Professor Sheldon S. Wolin, a political philosopher at Princeton University, USA, has warned of the danger of "inverted totalitarianism", as he calls it, which "lies in wielding total power without appearing to, without establishing concentration camps, or enforcing ideological uniformity, or forcibly suppressing dissident elements so long as they remain ineffectual". Such power, as in the USA, shows "how democracy can be managed without appearing to be suppressed". (Chellis Glendinning, "Every Move You Make", CounterPunch.com, 19 June 2008)

Imagine if the power of the surveillance state were applied to controlling political dissent, especially in an environment of merger between state and corporate power. Imagine dissidents being driven from their jobs or, perhaps more subtly, just denied promotion. Imagine how detailed files on the psychological weaknesses and vulnerabilities of all individuals, generated by profiling, and records of any past

indiscretions could be used to apply pressure upon opponents to government policy. Population Surveillance and Social Control China has become a laboratory for both capitalism and the development of new technologies for surveillance and "homeland security".

Naomi Klein has written extensively about this in her book The Shock Doctrine (Picador, 2008) and in articles such as "China's All- Seeing Eye" and "The Olympics: Unveiling Police State 2.0" (http://www.naomiklein.org/articles/2008?page=1).

Some powerful people appear to have decided that capitalism works best in conditions of inequality and injustice. A by-product of this is instability: bitterness and resentment due to the appropriation of land and resources and forcing peasants off the land to become sweatshop workers living in unbearable slums. This is about the rich getting richer by robbing ordinary people, co-opting the
power of the state to do so. This is the reason for the high incidence of riots, "disturbances" and social tension in contemporary China.

None of this troubles the West. What the West has tried to do, however, is guarantee China's stability and help keep a lid on any trouble by providing China with access to the latest surveillance and security technology, to make it a more effective dictatorship. New technologies that are found to work in the social laboratory of China can be adopted and applied elsewhere.

A good example of this would be facial recognition technology, supplied to China by the US, illegally but with a nod and a wink, to make it easier for the Chinese authorities to identify troublemakers in a crowd or simply follow the movements of people of interest and perhaps identify any people whom they meet and talk with. Recognition systems now can match one face in a million, good enough to find one face in a city.

How neatly this dovetails with the database of digital images provided by China's ID system.

RFID also has applications in the state security apparatus. China is issuing hand-held RFID readers to
its policemen so they can take people's identities from their ID cards. It has the highest incidence of riots of any country in the world, due to the severe social conditions and inequality.

China has adopted the practice of containing disturbances rather than wading in to break them up; instead of arresting rioters on the spot, the police merely identify them—to arrest one by one at their
convenience.

CCTV and surveillance technologies are used for this identification. RFID has an obvious application: the identities of everyone in a crowd could be collected by one mingling plain-clothes policeman with an RFID reader.
The RFID facility can also be useful to states with mobile populations. India is anticipating the migration of large numbers of the rural population to the cities. It plans to use a combination of RFID and GPS-based Geographical Information Systems (GIF) to automatically record the voter migration or shifting of residence and to automatically update databases such as the electoral register.

One can also see how useful this would be to the Chinese authorities, with large numbers of rural peasants migrating to cities, illegally, to work as an untraceable, unstable underclass. So, is this the model to be applied elsewhere: increasing inequality, increasing slum populations and unrest controlled through security? Such displacement is a global phenomenon. And yes, the World
Bank has an explicit role in promoting this, saying that urbanisation and migration are good and necessary things.

As described in Professor Mike Davis's book Planet of Slums (Verso, 2007), a huge part of the
world's population lives in slums—a symptom of growing inequality and increasing
exploitation. It's a trend that' ramping up.

In the USA, cities are dying, with whole neighbourhoods and in some cases whole districts being bulldozed, their inhabitants dispossessed. The plight of Detroit residents is reminiscent of post-Katrina New Orleans, with private military contractors assuming government powers in Urban Management Zones designated for wholesale clearance. This is the western manifestation of a global pattern. In 2009, the US Census Bureau plans to find even the people who have lost their homes, by employing 140,000 temporary workers to look for hidden and improvised housing units and obtain GPS coordinates for every "front door". A current legal case may make that data available to private sector corporations.

The worldwide implementation of systems for population surveillance and monitoring has to be significant. It doesn't sound like it is part of making the world a kinder, nicer place.

It's incredible how much people have willingly cooperated in handing over their
personal information, cooperating in the surveillance of their lives.


What Can We Do?
We shouldn't close on such a bleak note because it simply isn't true that there is nothing we can do,
although we have left it pretty late. We have a good chance if we recognise what's going wrong. We need to:

1. Organise internationally.
One campaign group is slightly ahead in this area: CASPIAN (Consumers
Against Surveillance, Privacy-Invasion And Numbering). It has an international membership, works closely with other groups in different nations and addresses the bigger picture, including corporate
data-gathering and RFID.

The author suggests CASPIAN as a good initial hub for contact.

2. Raise awareness,
Engage the public. It's time to raise this issue at every opportunity to get people
thinking about the direction of public policy, to draw their attention to what’s
going on.

3. Expose the mindset of people implementing this scheme.
The aim of ID cards is to create a detailed digital record of everywhere you go, everything you do. The aim of the RFID industry is Total Mobility— continuously tracking the movement of all significant objects and people. What kind of mind and personality would want such a thing?

4. Don't use cards, use cash.
It's incredible how much people have willingly cooperated in handing over their personal
information, cooperating in the surveillance of their lives. Try not to leave a digital record. Don't let
your card identify you.


Endnotes
1. Albrecht, Katherine and Liz McIntyre, Spychips: How
major corporations and government plan to track your every
purchase and watch your every move with RFID, Nelson
Current, 2005, p. 64, "There's a target on your back"
2. Gellman, Barton, "The FBI's Secret Scrutiny: In Hunt
for Terrorists, Bureau Examines Records of Ordinary
Americans", Washington Post, 11/06/05

This version of Nathan Allonby's article "ID
Cards – A World View", posted on the Global Research
website on 31 August 2009.
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Postby rath » Mon Feb 01, 2010 9:56 am

Barcode plan to restrict welfare recipients' purchases

February 02, 2010

Australia's Rudd government is investigating barcode technology to enforce spending bans under controversial income management arrangements for people on welfare payments.

At present, retailers are obliged to ensure income management recipients do not use government funds to purchase prohibited items such as alcohol and tobacco. Human Services Minister Chris Bowen has called for industry assistance to identify systems that would allow "product-level compliance" at the point of sale, reducing the burden on retailers.

The system is among a range of technologies solicited in the Better Dealings with Government paper.

Late last year, Mr Bowen signed an $11 million contract with payments provider Indue to operate the BasicsCard program in the Northern Territory and parts of Queensland, Western Australia and South Australia, until November 2013.


Anticipating a backlash, Mr Bowen said the reform would not involve a central database. "We will not house an individual's personal, sensitive information in one place, vesting all control with one body or card. This is not an Australia Card," he said.

Mr Bowen said the government anticipated "extensive work on privacy and authentication, as well as opportunities for public-private partnerships".

More than 50 responses to the payments discussion paper have been published, with some companies proving coy on many issues, citing commercial sensitivity and offering private briefings. The suggestion that an electronic barcode compliance system could be used to control welfare spending is provocative.

CSC Australia bluntly warned of the risks of proposing a method that could be used to "detect and prevent" buying patterns inconsistent with government policies.

"The introduction of such a scheme would cause a great deal of public discussion and perhaps controversy," it said. "This begs the question of whether this course of action should be pursued, regardless of its technical feasibility."

The National Welfare Rights Network said the proposal to use product barcode data to "create a computerised record of individual spending and purchasing evoked visions of Big Brother".

"In practical terms, what is being suggested is close supervision and surveillance of the poor," it said. This represented "a massive expansion of a more sophisticated BasicsCard scheme".

The Australian Council of Social Services said the government's move towards "targeted or conditional" payments was an "untested and dramatic change". It said: "The inadequacy of payments is the major financial challenge facing income support recipients, not an inability to budget."

However, BasicsCard provider Indue said government cards could ensure payments were spent for their intended purpose using managed programs, including limiting use to approved merchants, prohibiting cash-out and autoteller access, weekly spending limits and allowing only online transactions.

"We expect systems could cater for changes as and when policy changed, and with enhanced reporting government would be able to identify any misuse either by a merchant or cardholder," Indue said. "As part of the transaction approval process, data on the specific items could be transmitted" and purchases that fell outside the guidelines "could be declined".

Meanwhile, financial institutions supported government moves away from cheques to electronic payments, and chip-enabled cards or mobile services.

The Commonwealth Bank said the volume of cheques had dropped to such a low level that the cost would rise for government users. On the other hand, the latest bank-issued cards could store customer and government data on the internal chip, as well as software that would allow healthcare providers, for instance, to check eligibility for claims.

Internet payments heavyweight Bpay and its member banks believe the time for its long-anticipated Me at My Bank Online (Mambo) is finally at hand, and it would ensure better government payment delivery.

It was originally conceived as enabling customers to pay for online purchases directly from their accounts, rather than by credit card, and there has since been a huge shift in consumer transactions to the internet.
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Postby greeney2 » Mon Feb 01, 2010 11:55 am

Australia's Rudd government is investigating barcode technology to enforce spending bans under controversial income management arrangements for people on welfare payments.

At present, retailers are obliged to ensure income management recipients do not use government funds to purchase prohibited items such as alcohol and tobacco.


This is something they don't allow in the USA either, but you know they just cash their checks and buy it anyway. You definatly can not use food stamps or that kind of payment method. I don;t know if I've ever seen anyone use a food stamp in the market, and to be honest I've never actually seen one. I suppose people are embarrassed about them and probabaly discretly hand them to the checker.

The bar code is something that we are so monitored with, it is a conspiracy. We all register at our markets and pharmacy with Ralphs, Vons, CVS card, becasue we all want the discount. You don;t even need the card, just give them the phone number. You pay with a barcode ID, and all the product barcodes you bought are kept in data banks. The checker hands you a fistfull of discounts and "OH BOY, I USE ALL THESE". Duh! they know what you buy and how much you buy it, so they spit out the discounts for the next time, based on your history. Duh! go apply for insurance or a job someplace, and we would probaby be amazed at what they know, from barcode histories. Want a new life insurance policy, they know you buy an "on an average", 82% junk food barcodes, X# of acholhol products , and X# of tobacco products, and you just got done telling them you are a non-smoker, never drink, and eat only organic health food. This information may be shared or sold, just like TRW credit reports. You are part of a database for targeted advertizing. Joe Smo smokes--send him this discount offer. Not only does Joe drink, but he only drinks this or that brand, and drinks tons of it per year.

Corporate America, and maybe the Corporate world knows our entire lives via Social Security numbers, credit cards, bank records, and barcodes. Our locations are known via cellphones and GPS. Even our cars have it with the Star systems, and they have also suggested GPS chips that identify when cars emmisions are out , and automatically report you to your state capital. Where does this end? Sensors that automatically report speeding? Scanners in the roads could easily detect a sensor in the undercarriage of the vehicle that is running a red light. Factories already have unmanned expediter vehicles that, go to and from locations in the plant with parts, using sensors in the floors. Its very scary when you think of what the future could bring. When I went back to robotics school, we learned that programable robots can work 24 hours a day, and workers go home while robots work in the dark with the lights turned off.

Welcome to computer technoloy!
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Postby sandra » Mon Feb 01, 2010 12:32 pm

greeney2 wrote:
Australia's Rudd government is investigating barcode technology to enforce spending bans under controversial income management arrangements for people on welfare payments.

At present, retailers are obliged to ensure income management recipients do not use government funds to purchase prohibited items such as alcohol and tobacco.


This is something they don't allow in the USA either, but you know they just cash their checks and buy it anyway. You definatly can not use food stamps or that kind of payment method. I don;t know if I've ever seen anyone use a food stamp in the market, and to be honest I've never actually seen one. I suppose people are embarrassed about them and probabaly discretly hand them to the checker.


Greeney2, in the inner city around here you'd be amased at what I have come accross. Have to mention this- Whenever I go grocery shopping at the local Cub Foods, I get atleast one or two people asking me to buy their food stamps. They are looking for cash, and if they see you with a cart full of groceries, they target you. What they want, when you go up to the cash register to check out they will pay for your groceries in food stamps and you give them a cash vaule percentage afterwards.

Usually they ask you give them atleast half the vaule....$100 dollars groceries in their foodstamps for only $50 dollars of your cash. I'm sure I'm targeted because it is a rougher area of town, and with my coach purse, scarf, and shoes, usually I stand out, didn't realise anything like that until last week why people might be asking me soo much, so now I make sure to wear a sweat outfit, and only stop in that store if I'm picking up a couple things. Probably sounds ridiculous but otherwise I give in because I'll feel guilty. However I don't believe these specific women are looking for money for diapers or household items, and if they have food stamps they are not starving nor is their family. :?

So on the idea of tracking these transactions, it wouldn't show up they were purchasing anything other than what they should be when alot of them are cashing in?

rath, that was a great article, I will write more later concerning the subject. :)
“Living backwards!” Alice repeated in great
astonishment. “I never heard of such a thing!”
“—but there’s one great advantage in it, that one’s
memory works both ways.”
— Lewis Carroll, Through the Looking-Glass
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Postby greeney2 » Mon Feb 01, 2010 1:29 pm

Sandra, I would not do that anymore to give you some advise. I do a lot of Ebay stuff and they no longer allow payments by checks or money orders, they stopped money transfers a long time ago. I personally never had a problem, but now they only allow paypal, mostly becasue they own them.

The problem was personal money orders were no more than computer generated checks, and people thought they were getting legitimate money orders. They also had many counterfiet brand names, particualarly western union. Counterfeit or stolen cashiers checks and money orders were easy to do on a computer, and I believe counterfeit food stamps are something people are scamming. We used to have many panhandles around and the cops really clamped down on them around here. One lady for years had one street corner and would always bring her child to stand with her. She got to my wife on time in a parking lot. They know how to target certain people that ive to them, only so they go home with a clear conscience.

anyone who has and needs food stamps is scamming to take 50 Cents on the dollar for them. Bottom line is if she gets busted, you will get busted right along with her IMHO. You also never know if its a sting operation, and if you give them less than face amount, I'd undoubtly a crime. I have no idea how you would tell if they are fake, but if they have numbers and are stolen, thats big trouble. These kind of people know how to intimidate people into giving them money. Its hard to say know and they are experts at it. That same lady with the kid, after a few years we would see her at a busy corner, and her boyfriend would also be working the diagonal corner to her.

Don't get yourself in trouble with those panhandles, just tell them flat NO, and walk away from them. The minute you stop to talk, they are working you.
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Postby rath » Tue Feb 02, 2010 9:08 am

Food Stamps ...... as in, What communist Russia' handed out Under Stalin.

Australia has nothing of the sort.

Who would let their government get away with such a thing. ...

In Australia .....

Welfare recipients' Such as,

Students ... the Unemployed ..... The Disabled ... stay at home mothers .. Cares .. old age penisoners ..... ect ect

Get between around, $300 - $850 a fortnight ( fortnight = 2 weeks ) but that rate goes higher as other payments are added on to the ( Basic payment ) extras such as rent assistance ... phone allowance, studdy allowance, Travel allowances ...... ect ect

The government payment is deposited into YOUR / the persons bank account, every 2nd week.

you withdraw the cash ........ & do as you please with it.

& that is why the BASICS CARD was created ......

To stop people from doing as they please with the cash & spend the money on food & bills.

On looking after their kids ( if they have kids )

Now, the Australian government still puts the money into your bank account, but in order to access the cash you need the smart card, which is given to you by the Australian government.

The So called smart card is a debit card ..... which prevents you from withdrawing the cash at ATM's or Eftpos machines ..... So its charge only ( like a credit card )


The Smart card via the bar cods & rfi chips, prevent the holder from buying anything that does not have a barcode with the same RFI cods as on the list of approved government items.
Such as.

Food ... Clothing .... bills ... ect ect.


This system is meant to prevent people from withdrawing their wealthfare payments, & buying drugs or alcohol, or spending the money on strippers ... hookers ... gambling.

Ect ect.

http://www.centrelink.gov.au/internet/i ... 1001en.pdf


rath wrote:Barcode plan to restrict welfare recipients' purchases

February 02, 2010

Australia's Rudd government is investigating barcode technology to enforce spending bans under controversial income management arrangements for people on welfare payments.

At present, retailers are obliged to ensure income management recipients do not use government funds to purchase prohibited items such as alcohol and tobacco. Human Services Minister Chris Bowen has called for industry assistance to identify systems that would allow "product-level compliance" at the point of sale, reducing the burden on retailers.

The system is among a range of technologies solicited in the Better Dealings with Government paper.

Late last year, Mr Bowen signed an $11 million contract with payments provider Indue to operate the BasicsCard program in the Northern Territory and parts of Queensland, Western Australia and South Australia, until November 2013.


The National Welfare Rights Network said the proposal to use product barcode data to "create a computerised record of individual spending and purchasing evoked visions of Big Brother".
"In practical terms, what is being suggested is close supervision and surveillance of the poor," it said. This represented "a massive expansion of a more sophisticated BasicsCard scheme".
The Australian Council of Social Services said the government's move towards "targeted or conditional" payments was an "untested and dramatic change". It said: "The inadequacy of payments is the major financial challenge facing income support recipients, not an inability to budget."

However, BasicsCard provider Indue said government cards could ensure payments were spent for their intended purpose using managed programs, including limiting use to approved merchants, prohibiting cash-out and autoteller access, weekly spending limits and allowing only online transactions.



http://www.centrelink.gov.au/internet/i ... 0807en.pdf

http://www.mhs.gov.au/resources/media/r ... d-100m.pdf

Smartcard mooted for federal welfare payments
April 21, 2009

THE federal Government's welfare payment BasicsCard may become a smartcard.
The Human Services Department is preparing to approach the market for an alternative to its magnetic stripe card.

Human Services assistant secretary Brian Olsen said there had been no decision on whether to "exclude or require chip technology".

Plans to open bidding for the welfare card system industry follow an initially restricted tender, won by Retail Decisions, to fast-track the creation of an income management scheme.

Retail Decision's ReD Prepaid Cards arm was paid more than $2.5 million to design, build and operate BasicsCard in the present financial year.

Under the Northern Territory emergency intervention, Centrelink pays half of a person's benefit on to the card, quarantining funds for the purchase of food and other essentials at authorised stores.

Federal Community Services Minister Jenny Macklin has pledged to continue compulsory income management in the NT -- and in two other trial areas -- but the department emphasised that the tender "should not be taken as a sign of an intention to expand the scheme".

Ms Macklin has previously signalled a continuing overhaul of the delivery of social services, including pension reform, in the planned federal budget.

Meanwhile, briefings were held last week on the proposed Income Management Card Replacement Project, seeking industry comment ahead of the release of the tender in June. In particular, the department is trying to fix flaws exposed by the trials.

A serious difficulty is that the card uses the Eftpos network, which means customers are unable to obtain a current balance or check whether money has been paid into the account.

Centrelink has set up a hotline help service, but customers say the process is cumbersome and time-consuming.

It's understood the department may trial new autoteller sub-networks as a channel for balance inquiries. No cash-outs are permitted on the BasicsCard.

These providers already offer low-cost autoteller access to credit union customers, for example, and they are expanding their kiosk networks in response to regulatory changes.

Mr Olsen said the highest priority was to ensure the card was secure and fraud-proof, "because we want to ensure welfare recipients spend money in the interests of their children".

There were no plans to display a photo on the card, he said, and the PIN terms and conditions complied with industry standards.

"The Centrelink system itself does not interface with the Eftpos network," Mr Olsen said.

"For the current BasicsCard, Centrelink only interfaces with the card transaction services provider's system -- that is, Retail Decision's system."

To date, more than 16,500 users have been issued with cards, and nearly 1000 merchants have signed on to the scheme.

The initial rollout resulted in a high percentage of replacement cards being issued as some users failed to understand that funds would be topped up on the cards as payments fell due.

Mr Olsen said no instances of cards being sold or used by others had been reported to Centrelink.

"Most customers retained their original card, but a minority required multiple replacements due to cards being damaged or misplaced," he said.

"We're conducting an education program for those customers at the time of reissue."

Human Services chief technology architect Marie Johnson said last month the plan was to use existing infrastructure, including communications lines and point-of-sale terminals, at no extra cost to stores or customers.

"We pay monthly fees to the provider -- in this case, Retail Decisions -- for a range of services including the provision of card," she told the House of Representatives inquiry into the operation of stores in remote communities last month.

"They also have a number of subcontracted arrangements for switching services and settlement," she said.


The question is

how far do they intend to go with the technology ?

& what do they intend to do with the information ?


http://www.rta.nsw.gov.au/usingroads/et ... index.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Myki
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rath
 
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Postby rath » Mon Jun 21, 2010 11:16 pm

Welfare quarantining net to widen

June 22, 2010

THE biggest welfare reform in decades will become law as soon as today, expanding income management to disadvantaged groups across the country.

The federal government released a survey of its own workers yesterday, supporting the controversial measure about to be widened. Welfare quarantining was introduced as a part of the Northern Territory intervention into remote indigenous communities three years ago.

''Nearly 60 per cent of government business managers working in Northern Territory indigenous communities report that views towards income management have shifted favourably since June 2008,'' Indigenous Affairs Minister Jenny Macklin said of the survey. ''The majority of people believe that the [intervention] has had a positive impact on community awareness of nutrition, health, child abuse, education and drug and alcohol-related violence.''


The greatest supporters were women, followed by men with children, she said.

The Senate is expected to pass laws this week that increase numbers on income quarantining. Among those to be included are youth allowance recipients and long-term unemployed.

Income quarantining restricts a portion of welfare to spending on essentials such as food and clothing, and bans items such as alcohol and pornography.

Australian Council of Social Service (ACOSS) chief executive Clare Martin is yet to be convinced that the intervention is working.

''We've got no evidence,'' Ms Martin said. ''The Prime Minister says he is one for evidence-based policies and this is not. I'd call it anecdotal.''

The expanded system of income quarantining forces people to prove they can spend money responsibly, rather than the other way around. ''In wanting to assist people, they're targeting a whole set of Australians hoping they will have traction on certain individuals,'' Ms Martin said.

The assumption that vulnerable people needed help managing finances painted them as ''money wasters and abusers of children and that's a great sadness'', she said.

UnitingCare Australia National Director Susan Helyar said the cost of the scheme was misdirected. ''There no need for it to be rolled out widely and it's a waste of money to do that,'' she said. The 2009 Survey of Government Business Managers measured the opinions of officials in 62 NT emergency response communities and five prescribed town camps.

Almost half said people had a favourable attitude towards income management, and 63 per cent reported that food was available on a more regular basis. Most workers surveyed said there was a positive impact on community awareness of nutrition, health, child abuse, education and drug/alcohol-related violence.
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Postby rath » Mon Jun 21, 2010 11:32 pm

Australia Internet filtering a test case for global clean-feed

Implementation of the Australian Federal Government’s ISP-level filtering could spark worldwide adoption of Internet content filtering, according to IDC head telecommunications analyst, David Cannon.

Australia's Minister for Broadband, Senator Stephen Conroy, released the long-awaited Internet filter trial report yesterday and announced the Government’s plan to introduce a mandatory ISP-level filtering legislation to Parliament.

“I wouldn’t be surprised if most other governments head down this path in the not-to-distant future,” Cannon said. “If this is implemented in Australia and is done successfully, it would be a good case for other countries with much larger populations and broadband access to start looking at it.”

Cannon criticised the unbridled nature of the Internet, claiming existing regulations were too lax. He saw online content control as an inexorable and necessary outcome.

“At this point in time, it’s just too open, free-flowing and too uncontrollable for any of the existing formalities website owners adhere to,” he said. “When a website warns you of content intended for adults, you can just click right through it.

“Anybody that has a good understanding of how the Internet works would agree there needs to be some sort of governance in terms of rules around how the Internet should work and what types of information is ultimately available online.”

While wary of Australia becoming the next “Great Firewall”, like China’s stringent Internet censorship regime, Cannon claimed the ISP filtering plan would be dictated by society and less so by Government.

“I believe there is going to be a collective agreement around the filter and it’s ultimately something that will be governed by the moral standards of society and trying to find a balance with free speech activists,” he said. “Trying some sort of balance is the key issue at hand.”

Despite the storm of controversy the Internet filter trial cause when it was first announced, Cannon was confident the proposed legislation would sit favourably with most consumers. He pointed to a number of ISPs that have stepped out in support of the content filter as well as iiNet, which had dismissed the filter trial as a “waste of taxpayers’ money” before doing a backflip.

“It is a palatable thing and I think the majority of users in Australia, particularly those that pay the bills – mums and dads – will agree with that,” Cannon said.
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rath
 
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Postby rath » Mon Jun 21, 2010 11:44 pm

What is the 'Clean Feed'?
The Australian Federal Government is pushing forward with a plan to force Internet Service Providers [ISPs] to censor the Internet for all Australians. This plan will waste tens of millions of taxpayer dollars and will not make anyone safer.

The filter will do almost nothing to prevent the people who are willfully making, trading, and accessing child sexual abuse material. This type of material is not distributed in the open and we need to fund police to continue to infiltrate and prosecute the groups of people responsible for creating and distributing such material.

The filter will not prevent children from accessing inappropriate material. The proposed category of censored sites will not be wide enough to provide assurances to parents. Parents will be much better served by installing one of the many voluntary filters that are currently available and ensuring that their children are adequately supervised and aware of risks they may face online.

The list of material to be banned includes much more than child sexual abuse material. The category of material that has been 'refused classification' includes websites about euthanasia, controversial movies such as 'Ken Park' and 'Baise-moi', and many games that are designed for people over 16 years of age.

Despite being almost universally condemned by the public, ISPs, State Governments, Media and censorship experts, Communications Minister Stephen Conroy is determined to force this filter into your home.



EFA Filtering Fact Sheets

Get an overview of the scheme by checking out EFA's Filtering Fact Sheets.

http://www.efa.org.au/mandatory-interne ... ct-sheets/

What is the Government's plan?

Minister Conroy has announced that he will introduce “mandatory ISP-level filtering of Refused Classification (RC) –rated content.”1

◦The filter will be based on URL filtering of a blacklist of between 1,000 and 10,000 URLs.
◦The list of URLs will be based on the current ACMA blacklist, and will be supplemented by lists from international organisations (probably IWF).
◦RC computer games will be excluded from mandatory filtering until the completion of the R18+ review.

◦Additional funding will be available to encourage ISPs to offer voluntary filtering systems.
Filtering will not inhibit the access of people determined to create, distribute or receive child sexual abuse material

The proposed filter will only filter unencrypted web (HTTP) traffic. Not only will it be trivial to circumvent by those who want to, but it will not be able to stop the distribution of illegal child sexual abuse material on encrypted peer-to-peer networks, where the greatest majority such material is traded.

In order to address concerns about the sexual exploitation of children, greater investment is required in police investigations who are able to infiltrate the secretive groups where this child sexual abuse material is distributed and charge those who are creating and sharing this material.

Mandatory filtering will not protect children from inappropriate content

The list of URLs that will be filtered is only a tiny fraction of the material on the internet that may be considered harmful to children. A mandatory filter cannot address the bulk of inappropriate content, and the government is not in a position to determine what each parent believes to be suitable or not for their individual children.

The biggest risks that children face online are not the risk of exposure to inappropriate content, but the risk of inappropriate contact with others. In order to protect children online, we propose the following measures:

◦greater education for parents about the availability of voluntary filtering systems that can be tailored to block a much larger range of material;
◦greater education for parents and children about the risks that children face online, and how to address those risks.

Material that is 'refused classification' (RC) includes much more than child sexual abuse material
Only 18% of the URLs on the current blacklist contain child sexual abuse material (212 of the 1,175 URLs). The rest of the material is X18+ content (41%), R18+ content (5%), and 'other' (a whopping 36%). See libertus.net's breakdown for more information.


The National Classification Code defines what material is to be Refused Classification in Australia. The code states that the Classification Board must refuse to classify films, publications, and computer games that:

(a) describe, depict, express or otherwise deal
with matters of sex, drug misuse or addiction,
crime, cruelty, violence or revolting or
abhorrent phenomena in such a way that they
offend against the standards of morality,
decency and propriety generally accepted by
reasonable adults to the extent that they
should not be classified; or

(b) describe or depict in a way that is likely to
cause offence to a reasonable adult, a person
who is, or appears to be, a child under 18
(whether the person is engaged in sexual
activity or not); or

(c) promote, incite or instruct in matters of
crime or violence

The code additionally states that all computer games that are unsuitable for a minor to see or to play are to be refused classification.

The only material that is illegal to possess in Australia is child sexual abuse material.

In all states and territories except for Western Australia and certain prescribed areas of the Northern Territory, it is legal for adults to view and own material that has been refused classification. Australia's classification regime has always been about empowering adults to make appropriate choices and restricting only the public sale and demonstration of RC material. The filter, however, will attempt to prevent all Australians from accessing, rather than selling, prohibited material.

The list of material that will be banned under a mandatory filter is much broader than illegal child sexual abuse material. Based on previous decisions of the Classification Board, it includes:

◦Information about euthanasia;
◦Movies such as Ken Park or Baise-Moi;
◦Books such as Join the Caravan and Defence of the Muslim Lands
◦Many, many computer games, because Australia lacks an R18+ rating, although the filter will not immediately ban such games.
Items that have been banned because they 'promote, incite or instruct in matters of crime or violence' include things such as:

◦A satirical article title "The Art of Shoplifting" in a student newspaper (see libertus.net's summary of the case).
◦A computer game that features "an amateur graffiti artist [...] who uses graffiti and tagging as a way to protest the corrupt Dystopic city of New Radius, in a future world where freedom of expression is suppressed by a tyrannical, Orwellian city government" (wikipedia) because it "provided elements of promotion of the crime of graffiti." (see libertus.net's summary of the decision).

Outstanding technical issues

The clean-feed, if attempted, will be a technical disaster. The Internet does not work in a manner that would let a filter be effective, and the World Wide Web contains far more content than could ever be effectively rated by a Government organisation. The host of technical hurdles include:

◦Only illegal material published on web sites could be targeted, completely missing other methods of distribution such as BitTorrent.
◦Any determined user - including children - could bypass the filter quickly using an anonymizer service, open proxy, or VPN connection.
◦The clean feed would be less customisable and effective than a PC-based filter.
In short, as the best experts in the country unanimously agree, Conroy's plan does not make sense technically.8

There are free-speech concerns.

Although the initiative is intended and marketed as a tool to help protect children from the dangers of the Internet, this paternalistic scheme raises some troubling issues that affect all Australians. As a source of daily information, the Internet increases in importance every day. Do we really want the Government of the day deciding what Australian adults can and can't see? Do we want Australia to join a censorship club in which Burma, China and North Korea are the founding members?

◦The list of prohibited sites will probably be secret, so it will be hard to know what content the Government has effectively banned.
◦Filtering will be compulsory in all homes, even where there are no children.
◦It is unknown whether there will be any way to have content removed from the prohibited list.
◦How far will the list go, now and in future? Will it filter out material on sexual health, drug use, or terrorism? Euthanasia and anorexia have been touted by Government MPs as topics worthy of filtering.9

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The Clean Feed is bad policy.

In short, even if it worked the filter would be terrible policy. By censoring the entire country's Internet access down to the level of a child of indeterminate age, it robs Australian adults of ability to make their own decisions about what content they view.

◦Most Australians don't want the filter.Support for this overly broad policy is virtually non-existent, even from child-protection organisations. A recent survey shows that 51.5% of Australian net user strongly oppose the plan, while only 2.9% strongly support it.10
◦One size doesn't fit all. A single filter list can't deliver results that are appropriate for all parents, teens and children, with no way to customise the filter for your household.
◦The protection for children is minor at best, an illusion at worst. The clean-feed does nothing to protect children from real threats like cyber-bullying, online sexual predators, viruses, or the theft of personal information. It may provide a false sense of security to parents, reducing effective monitoring of their children's online activities.

◦The money is better spent elsewhere. The filter will cost tens of millions of dollars to attempt. Yet the Government's own studies admit education is more effective than filtering in protecting children, and that "content risks" are less dangerous than other risks.11
◦No other democracy has a scheme comparable to the clean-feed. Comparable systems in Europe only filter a handful of illegal sites, and then only to prevent accidental access.
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rath
 
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Postby rath » Mon Jun 21, 2010 11:59 pm

June 18th, 2010.

Govt wants ISPs to record browsing history

Companies who provide customers with a connection to the internet may soon have to retain subscriber's private web browsing history for law enforcement to examine when requested, a move which has been widely criticised by industry insiders.


The Attorney-General's Department yesterday confirmed to ZDNet Australia that it had been in discussions with industry on implementing a data retention regime in Australia. Such a regime would require companies providing internet access to log and retain customer's private web browsing history for a certain period of time for law enforcement to access when needed, according to Australian internet service provider sources.

Currently, companies that provide customers with a connection to the internet don't retain or log subscriber's private web browsing history unless they are given an interception warrant by law enforcement, usually approved by a judge. It is only then that companies can legally begin tapping a customer's internet connection.

In March 2006, the European Union formally adopted its data retention directive (PDF), a directive which the Australian Government said it wished to use as an example if it implemented such a regime.

"The Attorney-General's Department has been looking at the European Directive on Data Retention, to consider whether such a regime is appropriate within Australia's law enforcement and security context," a statement from the Attorney-General's Department to ZDNet Australia said yesterday. "It has consulted broadly with the telecommunications industry."

The EU regime requires that the communications providers from certain EU member states retain necessary data as specified in the Directive for a period of between six and 24 months.

One internet service provider (ISP) source told ZDNet Australia that the Australian regime, if implemented, could go as far as recording each URL a customer visited and all emails.

That source said such a regime "would be scary and very expensive".

Another industry source said Australians should "be very f***ing afraid".

They said the regime being considered by the Australian Government could see data held for much longer than EU Directive time of 24 months — it would be more like five or ten years.

"They seem quite intent [on implementing the regime] and they keep throwing up the words 'terrorism' and 'paedophiles'," the source said. "We're talking browsing history and emails, way beyond what I would consider to be normal SMS, retaining full browsing history and everything."

The office of the Attorney General has since denied that the data retention regime would involve recording users' web browsing history.

Internet Industry Association (IIA) chief executive officer (CEO) Peter Coroneos also confirmed that the industry was having discussions with the Attorney-General's Department.

"There has been some preliminary discussions with the Attorney-General's Department about a proposal for a data retention regime in Australia, but I think those discussions are at a very early stage," Coroneos said. He said the IIA hadn't "seen any firm proposals yet from the government".

"It's more along the lines of [the Attorney-General's Department asking] 'What do you see the issues of being if we were to move to a position similar to the EU'," he said.

"But as I say, there wouldn't be any intention, I wouldn't think, to move to any policy position on this unless there was a full public debate about the proposal."

If the idea were to move to a more "serious proposal", Coroneos said the IIA's view would be "to engage not only with the industry but also the community in a proper discussion".

Electronic Frontier Australia (EFA) chair Colin Jacobs said the regime was "a step too far".

"At some point data retention laws can be reasonable, but highly-personal information such as browsing history is a step too far," Jacobs said. "You can't treat everybody like a criminal. That would be like tapping people's phones before they are suspected of doing any crime."

He added that browser history could reveal all sorts of personal information. "And furthermore, the way the internet works, it's a huge amount of data to be kept and it requires some snooping on the part of the ISPs into which [web] pages people are looking at."

In February, the senate passed a Bill allowing ISPs to intercept traffic as part of "network protection activities". According to an ISP source, it's likely another Bill would be required for a data retention regime to be implemented.

"It is likely that new legislation will be required to put any [data retention] obligations in place," the source said. "It seems to be early days yet, and we have an election looming, which means there will be some time required to get any new law in place."
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