Not So Great Britain

Australia Spies, Immigration Share Info

July 11, 2007
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The government has accelerated plans to let spies share information with immigration officials, a week after a foreign doctor was arrested in connection with the failed British terror attacks, the prime minister said Sunday. Prime Minister John Howard said that new software linking the computer systems of the Australian Security and Intelligence Organization and the Immigration Department will allow deeper background checks on anyone applying to enter Australia.

Howard called it a “major upgrade of Australia’s control system.”

“These new resources … give us extraordinary additional capacity to drill down into the backgrounds of people who seek to come to Australia,” he told reporters.

Posted in Australia

Australia ‘has Iraq oil interest’

July 6, 2007
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Australian Defence Minister Brendan Nelson has admitted that securing oil supplies is a key factor behind the presence of Australian troops in Iraq.
He said maintaining “resource security” in the Middle East was a priority.

But PM John Howard has played down the comments, saying it was “stretching it a bit” to conclude that Australia’s Iraq involvement was motivated by oil.

The remarks are causing heated debate as the US-led Iraq coalition has avoided linking the war and oil.

Posted in Australia, Iraq

Fingerprints and iris scans as hospitals tighten security

July 6, 2007
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DOCTORS in South Australian hospitals may be subjected to biometric fingerprint and iris scans if they want to access sensitive patient records and prescribe drugs.

The technology, which includes keyboard-mounted fingerprint scanners and smartcard readers, could be deployed in hospital emergency departments within 12 months.

The scanners would be used to strengthen security around patient records as hospitals build new links between the numerous information systems used to manage medical data.

Posted in Australia

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