Government ‘incompetence’ set to kill internet privacy

Government ‘incompetence’ set to kill internet privacy

Global VPN provider NordVPN has hit out at the Australian government, saying a push to access encrypted communications would weaken internet privacy and security for all web users.

The company’s CMO, Marty P. Kamden, said the government is finalising a bill that is modelled on the UK’s “Snoopers’ Charter”, which he claimed has been labelled “the most invasive anti-privacy law ever passed in any Western country”.

Such a law would force all internet service providers (ISPs) and device makers, such as Apple and Samsung, to allow government agencies to access encrypted files to aid in police investigations.

“When any government attempts to access encrypted communications, it goes against the basic principle of end-to-end encryption, which is designed with the purpose not to be decoded by any third party,” Mr Kamden said.

“Proposing such a bill shows the incompetence of the government in technical matters because, in the end, it would take away privacy and online security from all internet users, creating a far more dangerous situation.”

According to Mr Kamden, VPN providers are expecting a massive influx in new customers should the bill be passed because “users simply don’t want to give their privacy away”.

He said VPNs are much harder for governments to control, given many do not keep usage logs – potentially allowing users to circumvent the legislation.

The proposal was met with widespread criticism when it was first announced mid-2017, so much so that a senior Apple executive reportedly flew to Australia to personally lobby the government against introducing such measures.

Businesses are already preparing for the impending arrival of mandatory breach reporting, which comes into force from 22 February 2018.

Government ‘incompetence’ set to kill internet privacy
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