2017 Independent Intelligence Review
The submission to the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet in relation to the 2017 Independent Intelligence Review (the Review) was prepared by the Law Council.
The Law Council commends the Australian Government undertaking the Review consistent with the 2004 Flood Review Recommendation that periodic reviews of the Australian Intelligence Community (AIC) occur every five years.1
The Review will examine: how key aspects of Australia’s security environment and the nature of security threats have changed in recent times (including as a result of technological advancements); how they are likely to change further over the coming years; and, how effectively the AIC serves Australian national interests and the needs of Australian policy makers.
The Law Council acknowledges that the proper functioning of the AIC is critical in safeguarding Australia’s national security and supports measures to protect the community from terrorist acts. Such measures, however, should remain consistent with established principles of the Australian criminal justice system, the rule of law and international human rights standards.
On this basis the Law Council’s submission focuses on the following issues:
- Overlap of questioning and detention powers of certain AIC agencies and the broader National Intelligence Community;
- Changes to the Intelligence Services Act 2001 (Cth) (IS Act) that enable the:
- Australian Secret Intelligence Service (ASIS) to collect intelligence on Australians overseas without first receiving ministerial authorisation; and
- Minister responsible for ASIS to authorise the production of intelligence on an Australian person who is, or is likely to be, involved in activities that pose a risk to, or are likely to pose a risk to, the ‘operational security to ASIS’;
- Oversight arrangements; and
- The impact of surveillance activities undertaken by intelligence agencies on the right to privacy.
You can read the full submission below.