Australia lawyers' group: Draft cyber laws would curb rights

October 18, 2018 - 9:27 pm

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — The president of Australia's top lawyers' group has told a parliamentary inquiry that proposed cybersecurity laws to force global technology companies such as Facebook and Google to help police by unscrambling encrypted messages sent by extremists and other criminals would significantly limit individuals' privacy and freedom.

A parliamentary committee on Friday began examining a bill introduced into the Parliament last year that would give security agencies new powers to demand that tech companies help them decrypt data.

Law Council of Australia's president-elect Arthur Moses told the committee that a secret service officer could be able to use the proposed law to side-step the need for a warrant.

He says the bill also places no time limit on how long a telecommunications employee can be held to assist police.

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