News and Updates
Confidential and trusted communications are essential to the ongoing safety, security and efficient use of global Internet communications networks for business, government and personal interactions. Strong encryption technologies are recommended to ensure confidentiality, and to ensure trust by authenticating that communications are really with the desired recipient and are not being hijacked and redirected by an imposter.
- Digital Rights Watch, Australia Privacy Foundation, Electronic Fontiers Australia, Access Now, NSW Council for Civil Liberties, Future Wise, Blueprint for Free Speech, Queensland Council for Civil Liberties
"Rather than create a separate 'complex issues' dispute resolution body that would appear to work in parallel to the TIO, Internet Australia has submitted that a strengthened TIO was actually the right body, and should be given the powers and resources to extend investigations of end-user complaints throughout the wholesale supply chain, and in particular to levy fines and costs directly against wholesale suppliers (including NBNCo) where they are found to have caused the problem, so that the RSPs are not lumbered with costs for complaints they did not cause. This should give RSPs the confidence to go to the TIO arm-in-arm with an end-user to support the end-users complaint and help the end-user get it resolved, and put the wholesale resellers/aggregators on notice to lift their performance as they would then be exposed to consequences they don't currently face." - Internet Australia
Internet Australia is deeply concerned with the exposure draft of the Telecommunications and Other Legislation Amendment (Assistance and Access) Bill by the Department of Home Affairs, and the short four-week period permitted for public comments and analysis.
“We recognise that law enforcement has a legitimate desire to access and view information transmitted across telecommunications networks by serious criminals, and that often these messages are encrypted in some form, as Internet application developers enhance the security and confidentiality of their services” the Chair of Internet Australia, Dr Paul Brooks, said today.
Reminder that, with great timing, Internet Australia and ISOC are hosting a number of
international and national experts on encryption at our public Encryption Experts
Session event at Parliament House in Canberra next Monday evening - arranged well
prior to yesterdays exposure draft release.
The event is free to attend and open to the public as well as members, there are still
tickets available at
A number of international experts in encryption and and secure communication are coming to Australia specifically to discuss the importance of strong encryption and Internet confidentiality with parliamentarians, joined with a number of local experts - and they have agreed to provide a public forum on 20th August 4:30pm - 7:30pm. It WILL be streamed live so that people not in Canberra can watch also.
International and Australian experts participating include:
- Dr. Hal Abelson, Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at MIT, a fellow of
the IEEE, and a founding director of Creative Commons and the Free Software Foundation.
- Martin Thomson, engineer at Mozilla, member of the Internet Architecture Board (IAB), lead of
the IAB Privacy and Security Program
- Mark Nottingham, engineer, member of the Internet Architecture Board (IAB), chair of the
Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) HTTP and QUIC Working Groups.
- Dr. Vanessa Teague, cryptographer, University of Melbourne
- Linus Chang, Director of Scram Software Pty Ltd, an Australian cloud security provider
- Peter Tonoli, Board member of Electronic Frontier Australia; Director; Internet Australia; and Senior Technical Fellow, Blueprint for Free Speech
The evening will be lead by Keith Besgrove, Vice-Chair of Internet Australia, Christine Runnegar, Senior Director at ISOC, and Ryan Polk, Policy Advisor at ISOC.
If you can attend in Canberra, please register for a ticket at https://www.eventbrite.com.au/
This event is the outcome of over a year of planning and negotiation, starting with the awesome George Fong before me. We haven't made a big splash about it before now, but behind the scenes, a small group of us have met in Canberra multiple times with politicians, Senators, Ministers, Shadow Ministers and their staff from all sides of politics, looking to advise and educate the policy makers on the importance of strong encryption for Internet trust and confidentiality, without backdoors.
Several times over the past two years, Attorney Generals Department, and now the Department of Home Affairs, has foreshadowed new legislation to assist law enforcement to gain backdoor access to encrypted messaging platforms and mobile handset devices, most recently in June in a speech by Angus Taylor MP, Minister for Law Enforcement and Cyber Security:
We know the legislation has been drafted for over 7 months now, yet they have not released even an exposure draft for the public to evaluate the impact of how they plan to access currently secure communications. This is shaping up to be another Metadata Retention fiasco all over again.
The Internet Society's position is clear:
and the Internet Society is supporting the awareness raising in Australia....see https://www.internetsociety.
We hope this will be the first of a number of information and awareness raising sessions on the importance of keeping strong encryption free from backdoors and other measures that will weaken security of confidential and secure communications, and potentially ecommerce, banking, and anyone who keeps confidential information on a smartphone.