May 16, 2013

Bumbling ASIC heralds new internet censorship era

ASIC has been revealed as the agency behind the blocking of a Melbourne education website, using a hitherto-unused internet censorship power.

Bernard Keane — Politics editor

Bernard Keane

Politics editor

An inept regulator exercising a hitherto-unused internet censorship power has been revealed as the source of the accidental blocking of a Melbourne education website.

IT industry news site Delimiter has revealed that Australian Securities and Investments Commission was behind the blocking of the Melbourne Free University website and more than 1000 other sites in early April when it sought to block a website suspected of engaging in fraud, using a power under s.313 of the Telecommunications Act.

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8 thoughts on “Bumbling ASIC heralds new internet censorship era

  1. RBTL

    “ASIC in effect used this power to censor the internet, in the course of which over 1000 sites unconnected to the target site were blocked, including Melbourne Free University, which was told nothing by authorities or its ISP about why.”

    Nice one ASIC, even the Caper Cops and Sam Tester could have done better than this episode of collateral damage.

    Memo to ASIC…stop jumping at shadows under the false pretext of security for foreign agenda’s and do the job you were created to do…whatever that is.

  2. john2066

    ASIC are, quite simply, the most useless oxygen thieves on the planet. Literally everything they are given to do they stuff up, and most of their time is spent chasing pettifogging microfines and late fees on small business in breach of their endless paperwork while the real crooks clean up.

  3. mind bot

    such help as is reasonably necessary for the following purposes: enforcing the criminal law and laws imposing pecuniary penalties

    Euthanasia is illegal. Let the blocking commence!

  4. Andybob

    ASIC failed to make a Reverse IP Domain check to identify non-targeted websites hosted at the same IP address. The AFP seems to be able to manage to do this when blocking child porn; why don’t they at least talk to each other ?

  5. David Leibman

    Poster RBTL 12.36pm

    It was n’t necessarily a “foreign” issue. They were local websites and ISP’s, although I agree with your theme regarding ASIC and similar structures that are seen to be doing but not doing what they are supposed to be doing. The FIRB is another classic example. Too many others to mention.

  6. Harry Rogers

    Somebody who was in Canberra recently for the Budget lock up conveyed to me how they were surrounded by 18 year olds kids feeding them spin and their favorite DVD was the West Wing.

    Poor fella my country.

  7. neil busacca

    a good reason not to host your website in australia or with a .au domain.

    its little wonder most of our net entrepreneurs head off to the usa when we have such inept regualtion and censorship in this country.

  8. Tim Vicenete

    If the government shut anything down it should be through due process. No politicians, faceless bureaucrats or the AFP making unaccountable decisions behind closed doors. Too much conflict of interest.

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