And you thought Homeland Security was bad

The AISO, Australia's central intelligence agency, spies on its citizens much more than the governments of the US or Britain, according to this article.

Australian police forces are using electronic surveillance at 27 times the per capita rate of their US counterparts. The 2514 court warrants issued for phone taps last financial year -- almost double that issued in the US -- was a tenfold increase in the past decade and a 16 per cent rise on the previous year.

The warrants apply to hundreds of thousands of individual phone calls, and police inspected 733,000 telephone bills, including inward and outward calls. Civil liberties groups claim that level of surveillance makes Australians some of the West's most monitored people.

And the trend is not favorable for advocates of civil liberties.

And last financial year almost 60 different government agencies asked Australia Post to disclose information about people's mail ? including details of who they were writing to or receiving mail from. A decade ago, there were 695 mail checks, but last year there were 17,210.

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with less than 20 million

with less than 20 million people and no borders to share, it is probably easier to conduct the surveillance at their level.

Of course since the country was started as a penal colony they have to spy on everyone!