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Australian society generally has been defensive about the protection of privacy, particularly in relation to communications. Apart from some limited common law and statutory protections, there is no right to privacy but rather an amorphous interest in privacy. In recent years, however, technological changes have led to increasing incursions into citizens’ privacy. This entry looks at Australia’s evolving stance on surveillance, examines the failed attempts at creating national identification cards, and reviews legislation relating to privacy and surveillance in the workplace.

Stance on Surveillance

Australia is unusual in having its modern origins as a penal colony. This is not without irony, as those familiar with the field of monitoring, surveillance, and privacy will be aware of Jeremy Bentham’s concept of a panopticon prison, in which all ...

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