back to article Australia's Department of Social Services pushing ahead with data-matching plans

The Centrelink “robo-debt” debacle hasn't dimmed the Australian government's enthusiasm for data-matching as a policy tool. The Department of Social Services (DSS) has confirmed to The Register that it plans to go ahead with its own big data project conceived in the February 2015 “McClure review” (full name: A New System for …

  1. Big-nosed Pengie

    What a funny little 1950s banana republic Australia has become.

  2. FozzyBear

    I look forward to hearing the news report

    Outlining how the federal government yet again screwed things up and all the De-identified data actually contained identification details on millions of individuals. Which unfortunately anyone was able to access and download through their unsecured gateway.

    The good news is that government insists that it will get things right on the 3rd or 4th attempt, after ensuring that no politicians information was contained in those data files.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    ...or how about using a different dataset?

    maybe the complete details of all expenses claimed by politicians for the last 25 years or so could be made available for "big data" analysis.

    though that may be a bit much data... perhaps it should be kept to 1 year, to keep the dataset manageable.

    1. Diogenes

      Re: ...or how about using a different dataset?

      see theshovel...

      Every minister in the federal government has been sent a letter saying they need to pay back thousands of dollars in entitlements, with the burden on the minister to prove otherwise.

      The new automated system was developed to create a more efficient process, cutting out the need for human involvement. “We developed an algorithm based on a number of inputs from previous data, and the formula came out at 100%,” a spokesperson for the project said. “It’s much simpler to just assume that all ministers are rorting the system and then weed out the ones that aren’t, rather than the other way around”.

      A special phone line has been set up for Ministers wishing to contest the claims. The average on-hold time is currently 7 hours.

  4. Winkypop Silver badge

    What could possibly go wrong?

    Data is never wrong, poor people are!

  5. Magani

    Got a correct acronym for once

    ...analyse the data in a Secure Unified Research Environment.

    Otherwise known as 'SURE'.

    Presumably as in "Secure Unified Research Environment - SURE it is..."

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    There are none so blind...

    Announcing his cabinet reshuffle this morning, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull dug in, saying that the debt recovery process was “entirely responsible and appropriate”.

    We seem to have another instance of The Emperor's New Clothes going on here.

    1. Trigonoceps occipitalis

      Re: There are none so blind...

      “entirely responsible and appropriate”

      I think he has been caught in flagrante de-facto.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    they just sent a letter out to everybody, and then picked on those that responded, got that from the phone jocky that harassed me

  8. Rattus Rattus

    What will the Coalition do

    if they ever run out of poor people to demonise?

    It's frankly an embarrassment that we have enough easily-fooled idiots in this country to have voted these bastards back in.

    1. T J

      Re: What will the Coalition do


      What will the Coalition do

      if they ever run out of poor people to demonise?

      It's frankly an embarrassment that we have enough easily-fooled idiots in this country to have voted these bastards back in.


      Yup, you've summed it up. We are a nation of extreme tardation.

  9. mr. deadlift

    data audit pensioners you say?

    enjoy not getting re-elected, dummies.

    would inject more profanity but proxy at work doesn't like me swears.

    would rdp and post elsewhere but lazy.

    beer on friday!

  10. Nocroman

    Not the Peoples Fault

    Reported or not, The people all know mistakes are mad. Humans always make mistakes. What we are tired of is that mistakes are made and then we citizens are fed Bullsh t with yet another cover up. If a government department makes a mistake, then admit the mistake and learn by it. Other politicians also need to stop calling for resignations every time a mistake is made. We The people hired the people working in the government and we the people are the only ones that should be calling for someone to resign for failure to do the job for which they are hired to do.

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