As technology enhances the state’s capacity to surveil its citizens it is becoming more and more apparent what relationship we have vis-a-vis the state. This is especially so in the modern welfare state. The logic is as follows: the state pays for you, the state owns you. Take, for example, the My Health Record:
Australian Federal Police, the Home Affairs Department, financial regulatory authorities, crime commissions, and any state or territory police force or anti-corruption bodies are among the law enforcement bodies that would be able to access Australians’ sensitive medical records if they held a “reasonable belief” it would be necessary to prevent a crime.
The Australian Taxation Office, Centrelink or Medicare could also look into an individual’s medical records as the legislation states that the “protection of the public revenue” is another reason for agencies to access My Health Record data, according to the analysis by the director of the Parliamentary Library’s Foreign Affairs, Defence and Security research section Nigel Brew.
You can opt out here.
As I’ve said before – if only there was a technology that allowed citizens control over their own data.