“A newly released report shows faster and wider harvesting of data about people was identified as a priority for bolstering counter-terrorism efforts.
The 135-page report about how the Security Intelligence Service (SIS) performed prior to the mosque attacks warned “data mining” may not go down well with the public but said the service should explore the government’s “appetite” for it.
The review was carried out in mid-2019 by an independent expert from a Five Eyes partner.
It said the threat from extremists was speeding up and fragmenting. “Signals of intelligence activity are becoming increasingly weak, well hidden and fragmentary.”
That blunted the SIS’s standard investigative approach, which was not good at generating its own leads, the report said.
“Anything which can help investigators develop a more detailed understanding of a threat more quickly is of critical importance.”