Pirate Party applauds Berners-Lee’s anti-retention comments

Pirate Party Australia applauds comments made by Tim Berners-Lee, inventor of the World Wide Web, warning of the potential pitfalls of data retention.

This week Berners-Lee raised concerns that data retention would needlessly compromise Internet users’ privacy while failing to actually assist in reducing serious crime.[1] His comments come as a result of proposals contained within the Attorney-General’s National Security Inquiry discussion paper which has been met with widespread criticism.

“Data retention is a serious threat to personal privacy,” said Mozart Olbrycht-Palmer, Deputy Secretary of Pirate Party Australia. “While the Attorney-General, other parliamentarians, law enforcement and intelligence agencies champion its necessity to protect the community, they consistently fail to acknowledge the potential ramifications of placing an entire nation under constant surveillance.”

“As Mr Berners-Lee rightly points out: people often feel more comfortable seeking help anonymously online than from friends and family. Compromising the ability for people to maintain anonymity is a slippery slope away from protecting the community.”

“At the same time, the criminals that we are told are being targeted by data retention will fall through the gaps. Organised crime groups and child abuse rings are not technologically illiterate. They are not naïve enough to conduct communications and transactions using traceable, unencrypted services and connections,” Mr Olbrycht-Palmer continued.

Pirate Party Australia, now a registered federal political party, is committed to protecting personal privacy and opposes blanket data retention as proposed by the Attorney-General.

The statements by Tim Berners-Lee closely mirror the concerns highlighted by Pirate Party Australia in its submission to the National Security Inquiry, which is available here: https://pirateparty.org.au/media/submissions/ppau-national-security-inquiry-submission.pdf

The Party maintains a petition against the proposals of the National Security Inquiry which will be presented in the Senate this February. Concerned citizens can sign the petition here: https://pirateparty.org.au/natsecinquiry-petition/

[1] http://www.itnews.com.au/News/330394,tim-berners-lee-calls-data-retention-a-really-really-bad-idea.aspx

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