Information about the inability to open links on the Police network due to "Security reasons"

Hugh Davenport made this Official Information request to New Zealand Police

Currently waiting for a response from New Zealand Police, they must respond promptly and normally no later than (details and exceptions).

From: Hugh Davenport

Dear New Zealand Police,

I recieved a call from a "private" number on 14 May 2019 around 1:45pm, which resulted in a message on my voicemail box due to me being unable to answer the phone. The called identified themselves as "the Police from Wellington", and did not leave a name, or a return number. The call was regarding some traffic cases I submitted recently, which I now believe are 190317/7957 and 190213/6528.

The caller claimed that they were unable to open the links I provided (which potentially was https://bit.ly/2UP61Ar which redirects to https://drive.google.com/file/d/17L8GMzW...). The case summaries provided to me have the following comment:
- The attached Web site has significant security concerns and as a result i will not be accessing the website to view the video.

As I'm unable to contact this mysterious "Police from Wellington", and the case summary provided to me gives no identifying information about the officer, I'm unable to ascertain what is such signifant security concern with those links. As a security professional myself, I find this quite unusual, as both bitly and google are quite major websites used by many internet users both in NZ and around the world.

I would like to request any information about what "significant security concerns" there are around these links, whether the concern is due to the https://bit.ly website, or the https://drive.google.com website. In addition, I would like to request any information about why these links might be blocked in the Police network, and what alternatives the Police offer for a similar situation (ability to provide files to the Police via the internet).

Yours faithfully,

Hugh Davenport

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From: Hugh Davenport

Dear New Zealand Police,

In addition, if the Police find Google to be such a "significant security concern", when will there be an announcement to the rest of New Zealand that Google should not be trusted? Or do the Police not care about whether citizens are "safe" on the internet...

Yours faithfully,

Hugh Davenport

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From: Online Forms - New Zealand Police

Your request has been sent and Police will respond as soon as possible.
Thank you for contacting New Zealand Police.

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Here is a copy of your submission for your records.
Submitted on Tuesday, 4 June, 2019 - 09:47

Submitted values are:

District or Police National Headquarters (PNHQ): Wellington (including Lower Hutt / Upper Hutt / Porirua / Masterton)
First Name: Hugh
Middle Name(s):
Family Name: Davenport
Email: [FYI request #10418 email]
Contact Phone Number (daytime):
==Information you are requesting==
What information do you require? Please see attached
Police reference number:

Preferred delivery of Police's response: email

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New Zealand Police

Mr Hugh Davenport

 

Request for Information - IR-01-19-15399

 

I refer to your correspondence dated 30 May 2019 in which you requested:

"any information about what "significant security concerns" there are
around these links, whether the concern is due to the https://bit.ly
website, or the https://drive.google.com website. In addition, I would
like to request any information about why these links might be blocked in
the Police network, and what alternatives the Police offer for a similar
situation (ability to provide files to the Police via the internet)."

 

 

I have considered your request in accordance with the Official Information
Act 1982, some information has been withheld.   
Policeblock various websites to protect the Police network for potentially
harmful links or malware. This is controlled automatically at device,
proxy and DNS levels. 
We do not disclose the name of the service providers or applications used
by Police and this is refused pursuant to Section 6(c). 
As this is done automatically we can’t comment on specific URLsblocked at
specific times as those URLs change depending on current threat
information used globally. Other blocks are in place for categories of
sites and access is only allowed by exception.  
Policeprovide online capability for members of the public to report and
upload evidence to Police for a limited number of reportable crimes (lost
property, intentional property damage and theft) see
https://105.police.govt.nz for further information. Alternatively, members
of the public can provide data evidence using a USB memory stick directly
to Police.   Policealso provide a non-emergency number to report crime by
dialling 105.

If you are not satisfied with my response to your request you have the
right to complain to the Office of the Ombudsman and seek an investigation
and review of my decision.

Kind Regards

Perry Dinnan

Sergeant G578

 

                             

Official Information Requests

WELLINGTON DISTRICT

Level 5, 39 Victoria Street, Wellington

Mail to: c/- Level 5,

39 Victoria Street |PO Box 693         

Wellington 6011|DX: SX11220              

DDI: 04 381 2000

[1][email address]          

             

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From: Hugh Davenport

Dear New Zealand Police,

Thanks for that. I remind you of my additional request made on the 30th. Not due left, but just wanting to make sure it doesn't get lost.

In addition, if the Police find Google to be such a "significant security concern", when will there be an announcement to the rest of New Zealand that Google should not be trusted? Or do the Police not care about whether citizens are "safe" on the internet...

As you haven't specified whether Google or bitly is on the blacklist, I can clarify this follow up request to "if the Police find any site to be such a "significant security concern" (in this case, either bitly or Google), when will there be an announcement to the rest of New Zealand that such sites should not be trusted? Or do the Police not care about whether citizens are "safe" on the internet?"

I acknowledge this will reset the clock, but I feel like it will be less likely to be refused by making it more generic.

Yours faithfully,

Hugh Davenport

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Things to do with this request

Anyone:
New Zealand Police only: