Comprehensive revision of the Telecommunications (Interception and Access) Act 1979

24 March 2015

© Commonwealth of Australia 2015
ISBN 978-1-76010-181-7

View the report as a single document - (PDF 2519KB)

View the report as separate downloadable parts:

Members of the committee (PDF 30KB)
List of abbreviations (PDF 8KB)
Overview - Introduction (PDF 163KB)

The referral
Background to the terms of reference
The current inquiry
Note on references
Scope and structure of the report

Chapter 2 - The Telecommunications (Interception and Access) Act 1979 (PDF 159KB)

Why is reform needed?
Support for reform
Law enforcement and national security agencies
Civil liberty and rule of law stakeholders
Approach to reform
Balancing the right to privacy and national interests

Chapter 3 - Warranted access to telecommunication content (PDF 128KB)

An overview of the warrant regime
Telecommunications service warrants and named person warrants
Stored telecommunications warrants
Removing legislative duplication in the warrant regime
A single attribute-based interception regime
How would it work?
Concerns raised in relation to attribute-based interception

Chair's Minority Additional Comments - Access to telecommunications data (PDF 579KB)

An overview of the telecommunications data access regime
What is telecommunications data?
Using telecommunications data
The need to review the threshold for access to telecommunications data
Introduction of oversight for telecommunications data
Should access to 'telecommunications data' require a warrant?
Why is mandatory data retention being proposed?
Scope of the proposed mandatory data retention regime
Is international practice moving away from mandatory data retention?
Alternatives to mandatory data retention
Broader reform is required
The need for a definition
Access to telecommunications data
The proposed retention period
A destruction requirement
Protection of press freedom
Mandatory data breach notification scheme
Divergent views on '5 Eyes' collaboration

Additional Remarks from Government Senators (PDF 204KB)

The Reform Agenda
Streamlining the Warrant Regime
Oversight and the Commonwealth Public Interest Monitor
Metadata – Definition
Mandatory Data Retention
Objects Clause
Destruction requirement
Conclusions and Recommendations

Comments from Opposition Senators (PDF 115KB)

Recommendations of the 2013 PJCIS Report with respect to telecommunications interception

Appendix 1 - Recommendations 1 to 18, 42 and 43 of the PJCIS Report of the Inquiry into Potential Reforms of Australia's National Security Legislation (PDF 103KB)
Appendix 2 (PDF 7KB)

Public submissions

Appendix 3 - Public hearings and witnesses (PDF 64KB)
Appendix 4 - Examples of telecommunications data generated by a website, a Facebook page and a tweet (PDF 403KB)
Appendix 5 - Tabled documents, answers to questions on notice and additional information (PDF 66KB)

Answers to questions on notice
Additional information

Appendix 6 - Directive 2006/24/EC of the European Parliament and of
the Council of 15 March 2006
(PDF 240KB)

Committee Secretariat contact:

Committee Secretary
Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee
PO Box 6100
Parliament House
Canberra ACT 2600

Phone: +61 2 6277 3560