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Encrypted Messaging Apps Targeted By Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission

The Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission is attempting to increase its powers to gather information from encrypted messaging apps.

In a bill floated in the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Intelligence and Security, ACIC claim these apps are solely the domain of criminals. If granted additional powers, the AFP and ACIC will be able to access these apps and their information without the knowledge of the Australian citizens using them. This obviously poses a problem for journalists, who use WhatsApp and similar software to receive anonymous tips.

“These platforms are used almost exclusively by serious and organised crime groups and are developed specifically to obscure the identities of the involved criminal entities and enable avoidance of detection by law enforcement,” the ACIC state (incorrectly).

“They enable the user to communicate within closed networks to facilitate highly sophisticated criminal activity”.

“Criminals are increasingly using the Dark Web and dedicated encrypted communication platforms to facilitate and undertake a wide range of serious crimes, including money laundering, illicit drug and firearms smuggling, and the production and dissemination of child exploitation material.”

 

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