Data Retention

So yesterday I was driving home from university in my car with the radio on listening to Triple J’s ‘Veronica and Lewis’, who were encouraging people to send shady text messages to each other, screen cap them, and send them into the station. Why? To help out our government on their first official day of ‘monitoring’ our communication platforms (like they weren’t already being monitored.) Australian telecommunications have been required by law to store customers’ data for a period of two years. Our metadata is the target, which will in turn, expose the communication patterns of the population.

The segment on ‘Veronica and Lewis’ was quite entertaining, people sending in shady text messages to the standard of ‘see you later at training, it’s going to be a ‘blast’. hit them ‘sky high’.’, etc.

Ironically, it was Malcolm Turnbull himself who had previously been campaigning for ‘individual rights’, arguing that it would be “wrong in principle”, and that terrorists would be able to “easily get around it“. It’s interesting that now, only two years later Turnbull has found himself backed into a corner, to create the data retention scheme that was officially introduced as of yesterday.

Telcos aren’t going to keep a record of your wake-up time or the song you played in the shower but there will be pings of your phone’s approximate location as you access the internet to check Facebook.

WHAT’S RECORDED: Every email you send will have some information recorded about it. Not your message, but your address, the recipients’ address and the time it was sent.

There are two official reasons to introduce this official collection of metadata.
1. A regime against the war on terrorism
2. A regime to put an end to the committing of piracy and copyright infringements

– Use a strong password and change it up for each platform
– Use applications that send messages via the internet, and encrypt them. The provider will know you are using the app, but not who you have contacted.
– Use a VPN and mask yout IP address
– Learn about what’s changed, and become tech savy. Keep up to date with new resources.

Who knows, this blog post itself might even get flagged.


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