News and Events

Seminar by Gregor Urbas: 'Public surveillance, private surveillance and automated covert evidence-gathering'

On 30 May 2017 Professor Gregor Urbas will give a seminar on ''Public surveillance, private surveillance and automated covert evidence-gathering''. Location M1003.


The general legal prohibitions on the use of technologies for covert surveillance have exceptions for public authorities such as law enforcement agencies, whose actions are prospectively through judicial warrants or similar authorisations. Private use of surveillance devices is less well regulated, though there are exemptions based on consent and protection of lawful interests, which arise in some civil litigation. However, neither public nor private regulatory models appear to cover advanced evidence-gathering techniques such as the “Sweetie 2.0” chatbot developed by the Dutch organisation, Terre des Hommes. This presentation explores the issues and potential future directions of surveillance law reform.


Dr Gregor Urbas is an Associate Professor of Law at the University of Canberra, where he teaches Criminal Law and Procedure, Cybercrime and Evidence Law. He has written extensively on criminal justice issues. He previously held positions at the Australian National University (ANU), the Australian Institute of Criminology (AIC) and the Law Council of Australia, and is an Adjunct Associate Professor at the ANU College of Law and at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, Canada. Dr Urbas is currently a Visiting Fellow at the Tilburg Institute for Law, Society and Technology (TILT) at Tilburg University. He wrote the Australian country analysis for the Sweetie 2.0 Report published by Terre des Hommes in late 2016.

Please register for the seminar by sending an email to Ghislaine van den Maagdenberg:

When: 30 May 2017 12:00

End date: 30 May 2017 13:30