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‘It’s a slippery slope’: Concerns over state government plan to harvest mobile phone data

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The Victorian government wants to harvest data from mobile phones, apps and GPS devices, in order to track movement across the state.

The collected information would be used to monitor the efficiency of the public transport system.

Liberty Victoria president Jessie Taylor says she has some “real concerns” about the proposal, which is lacking important information about how and where the data will be stored.

“They are saying that all of the information would be de-identified but that’s where we have real concerns,” she told 3AW’s Kate and Quarters.

Ms Taylor said information could be vulnerable to hacking, or used in personal attacks.

“Whenever there are big bits of data stored in one place … that becomes a bit of a honeypot for hackers,” she said.

“There is a slippery slope of concerns around the use of this kind of data.”

In the past, large scale location data collected by Google has been used to gather data on public transport.

Acting premier Lisa Neville defended the plan, saying all information would be de-identified.

“It’s all about making sure our city is moving during this construction period,” she said.

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