| WARRANTS permitting Australian authorities to tap telephones were issued too easily and by too many agencies, according to the NSW Council for Civil Liberties.
NSW council president Cameron Murphy said the number of telephone tapping warrants issued increased dramatically over the past five years and constituted a gross breach of privacy.
"They are a massive intrusion into people's privacy," he said.
"Warrants are issued too easily."
His comments follow the release of figures by the Federal Opposition which showed Australia's rate of phone interception was 20 times higher than in the US.