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Services Australia pays $1.2m for controversial spyware for fraud investigations

Federal agency refuses to say which programs, such as jobseeker, Medicare or the disability pension, it uses Cellebrite technology to probe

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Services Australia has paid $1.2m to a controversial digital intelligence company that allows police to crack into smartphones and copy all the data, for software to aid in “investigations into fraud and other criminal behaviour”.

Israeli company Cellebrite’s technology is traditionally purchased by police around the world – including Victorian and New South Wales police in Australia – to obtain data from phones held in their possession.

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