News & Views

Discussion: Identify and Disrupt Act

Audio Recording of Discussion

The Surveillance Legislation Amendment (Identify and Disrupt) Act 2020, which became law on 3rd September 2021, gave broad and vast powers for federal police and intelligence agencies to spy on, disrupt, and modify communications. The government claims the targets of this bill are organised criminals, but the broadness of the new powers could be used to “identify and disrupt” activists, simply by virtue of the offences that are levelled against some types of civil and political activity.

MALS has a discussion with lawyer and human rights advocate Angus Murray, Lucie Krahulcova from Digital Rights Watch, and Sam de Silva from the Oxen Privacy Tech Foundation to explore how this Act works, how it may interface with activists and activist groups, as well as some potential ways to think about assessing the increased digital security risks for activist work.

This discussion took place 28th September 2021.

For background see our article: Identify and Disrupt Bill (August 2021)

Melbourne Activist Legal Support (MALS)

is an independent volunteer group of lawyers, human rights advocates, law students and para-legals. MALS trains and fields Legal Observer Teams at protest events, provides training and advice to activist groups on legal support structures, and develops and distributes legal resources for social movements. MALS works in conjunction with law firms, community legal centres, and a range of local, national, and international human rights agencies. We stand up for civil and political rights.

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