16 August 2013
PM forced to admit GCSB can read NZers’ inbox
John Key has been forced to admit that the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) Bill does allow his spy
agency to read the content of emails and other electronic communications, the Green Party said today.
After claiming on Campbell Live that the GCSB would not be able to look at the content of communications as a part of
the agency’s cyber-security function, John Key has now had to backtrack and acknowledge that there is nothing in the
Bill preventing that.
“John Key has finally admitted that his Bill will allow New Zealanders’ emails to be spied on,” said Green Party
Co-leader Dr Russel Norman.
“John Key says that he won’t allow the GCSB to access New Zealanders’ emails without good reason. Actually, that needs
to be spelt out in the law, not left up to an individual’s judgment. This is not how good law is made.
“The Prime Minister is asking us to trust him in applying the GCSB’s new extensive powers. This is the same man who two
nights ago misled the nation on what the GCSB Bill does.
“The Prime Minister didn’t tell New Zealanders the truth about the GCSB Bill. There are only two explanations - John Key
either doesn’t understand his own Bill, or he purposely misled people about it.
“The original purpose of the GCSB Bill was to clarify the law, but rather than clarifying anything, it seems that it’s
being muddied and we are told to rely on John Key’s assurances.
“At least by being forced to make assurances, John Key is finally acknowledging that New Zealanders do not want to be
“Now John Key needs to do the right thing and stop the GCSB bill while we have a wide ranging, independent inquiry into
our intelligence and security agencies.”