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R. G. Casey House houses the headquarters of the Australian Secret Intelligence Service. (Image from wikipedia.org, author Adam Carr)

Australia’s senate has endorsed new anti-terror laws that will grant its intelligence agency the right to spy on any citizen with just a warrant, while journalists and whistleblowers “recklessly” exposing special ops can face up to 10 years in jail.

The anti-terror laws, which cleared the Australian Senate on Thursday – and will almost certainly pass the House of Representatives on Tuesday – grants extraordinary powers to the nation’s spying agency, ASIO, to effectively monitor the entire Australian internet. 

The National Security Legislation Amendment Bill allows one warrant to give the ASIO access to a limitless number of computers on a computer network when attempting to monitor a target. It also allows for the content of communications to be stored – while ASIO agents will be allowed to copy, delete, or modify the data on any of the computers it has a warrant to spy on.

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Image from twitter.com/SomersetBean

Critics of the law say it effectively allows the entire internet to be monitored as it is a ‘network of networks’ and the bill doesn’t define a computer network.

Moreover, under the new law, anyone identifying ASIO agents or disclosing the information related to a special intelligence operation faces up to 10 years in jail. To be found guilty one would only need to be proven to be “reckless as to whether the disclosure of the information will endanger the health or safety of any person or prejudice the effective conduct of an SIO.”

Read more at RT News

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