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Another strike in the war between control and privacy
"Australia considers email snoop powers for bosses: minister". SYDNEY (AFP) — Bosses will be able to spy on workers' emails without consent under new anti-terror laws being considered in Australia, Deputy Prime Minister Julia Gillard said Monday.

For fuck's sake, Julia - this is a tired argument and not one that justifies further erosion of privacy and freedoms.

1. Untrained network and systems administrators do not guard against terrorism: authorities do.

2. Authorities who need access to data for a national security investigation are going to get it, regardless of employee consent.

3. Many workplaces make surveillance a condition of employment. There's little benefit in changing legislation just to make it easier for companies that have not yet informed staff of the intention to monitor usage.

4. The EFA is right: the powers will be used to serve the corporate agenda more than they will be used to protect national security. Are any safeguards going to be introduced with these changes?

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Julia Gillard's on board with this snoop thing? Wow, apparently I know nothing about politics, b/c I would have pegged her as somebody who would fight that kind of thing with her dying breath. (Not that I should be surprised to learn that I know nothing about politics.)

Just because the ALP has a focus on industrial relations and social policy, that doesn't mean they're immune to the allure of power and control. The reality is that many companies already monitor Internet usage and allowing them to do it covertly seems like a minor change. But that's how privacy is eroded: one step at a time.

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