NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden accused Australia of undertaking mass surveillance of its citizens and passing laws on the collection of metadata that he says do not protect society from acts of terrorism.
Snowden, addressing the Progress 2015 conference in Melbourne via satellite link, criticized Australia’s new metadata laws, which
allow the government and intelligence agencies to keep a constant watch on citizens.
“What this means is they are watching everybody all the time,” the former NSA contractor-turned-whistleblower said.
“They’re collecting information and they’re just putting it in buckets that they can then search through not only locally, not only in Australia, but they can then share this with foreign intelligences services.”
Last month, Australia passed controversial laws that require telecommunications firms to retain their customers’ phone and
computer metadata for two years.