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Cybersnooping: submissions due

1 December 2000

Kia ora,

This is to alert you to the deadline for submissions on the government’s cybersnooping proposals - as per Supplementary Order Paper (SOP) No 85 to the Crimes Amendment Bill (no 6) - which will give unprecedented potential for large scale automated surveillance of electronic messages, and state hacking into personal computers. The deadline for submissions has been set as 9 February 2001, despite the government having earlier said ‘about six months’ would be allowed for submissions to be made (see Keith Locke’s media release on this below).

We will be sending out further information about SOP 85 in the next couple of weeks, but in the meantime, if you would like a copy of the Bill and a copy of the Hansard record of the debate when the Bill had its first reading, please let the PMA office know and we can send them to you by fax or post. They are not available in email form. If you can send a donation to cover the cost of our copying and sending the material to you ($3-00 per set of papers), we would be very grateful.

To make a submission - twenty five copies of your submission should be sent to Tracey Rayner, Law and Order Committee Secretariat, Bowen House, Parliament Buildings,Wellington by 9 February 2001. If you wish to appear in person before the Committee, you need to state this clearly in your submission, and include a contact name and daytime phone number. Submissions to select committees generally become public. Contact the committee secretariat before sending information of a private or personal nature, fax (04) 472 6160.

You could also send your thoughts about this proposal to the national/nationally distributed media : Christchurch Press, fax (03) 364 8492,; Dominion, fax (04) 4740257; Evening Post, fax; (04) 474 0237,; New Zealand Herald, fax (09) 373 6434,; Sunday Star Times, fax (09) 309 0258; Press Association, fax (04) 473 7480; Radio New Zealand, fax (04) 473 0185; Listener, fax (09) 360 3831,

30 November 2000

Restriction on public say over snooping laws

Green MP Keith Locke today accused the Government of going back on a commitment to allow full public debate on legislation allowing police and security agencies to intercept emails and hack into computers.

Parliament's law and order committee has placed advertisements in newspapers this week setting a February 9 deadline for submissions on the Crimes Amendment Bill (No 6).

"This deadline betrays a commitment Communications Minister Paul Swain made when introducing the bill, that there would be 'about six months for people to have their say'," said Mr Locke, the Green Party's police spokesperson.

"If you take away the holiday period, a February 9 deadline gives people very little time to prepare their submissions.

"Electronic interception and hacking are highly technical areas. Fully informed submissions will take some time to prepare. There are also major human rights and privacy issues for submitters to wrestle with.

"The Green Party is totally opposed to this draconian legislation. We may be the only party in the House to have voted against its introduction, but on this issue we represent a huge body of public opinion.

"The internet is abuzz with protest. The Green Party is circulating a petition not to allow 'police and security services to intercept email message'. It is signed by most people approached.

"I have written to Mr Swain, and the chair of the committee, Janet Mackey, asking for the time for submissions to be substantially extended," said Mr Locke.

Index page on Spies, Secret Services...

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