Netsweeper, the Internet filtering supplier linked to Telstra’s voluntary filter trial is also a supplier to the Yemen, the UAE and Qatar. Telstra’s URL data collection for users of its 3G data services was originally noted in Australian broadband community site Whirlpool and followed up by the Australian Network Operators Group …
Shades of Phorm? Of course, it's all in our best interests, they're only trying to help...
Is that the States, Canada, Mexico or one of those 'developing' countries? America is awful big.
Schools all over the UK and the world use Netsweeper for their filtering too... No outcry there.
Unless of course there was a unique id associated with requests (other than requesting IP which they should be smart enough to have removed) in which case you can often back out the individual from some of the requested URLs and associate them via this anonymising token. It's seldom done properly.
Not just privacy principles
The engineers involved will hopefully be happy to know they have committed offences under the Telecommunications (Interception and Access) Act 1979 (Cwth), which carry penalties of up to 2 years imprisonment.
Unfortunately, I wouldn't expect them to see the inside of a jail cell.
As far as Telstra's concerned.
There would be sites that contained data in the url but did not use standard authentication methods and thus the information was sent off shore to the usa. Once its in the usa, australias privacy laws no longer apply (and have already been breached, as customers were not made aware) and the us patriot act does apply, meaning that it can be used against australians. While this is not likely to affect regular users browsing the net on the phone it sets a very bad precedant and should not be taken lightly.
"Our customers trust is the most important thing to us ... "
Then it might be worth highlighting to the paying opt-in customers of this filtering service that it can be easily bypassed using an offshore VPN service for a few dollars a month, a cost that wouldnt even put a dent in most kids pocket money.
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