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Downloading firearms: Is an Internet connection all you need to get a gun in Australia?

25th October 2018

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Roderic Broadhurst is Professor of Criminology at RegNet. He is Director of the ANU Cybercrime Observatory which was established in 2012. The Observatory is a focal point for research on human factors and cybercrime.

His current research focuses on crime and development, the recidivism of homicide offenders, cybercrime and organized and transnational crime.

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New South Wales laws that have prohibited the possession of digital firearms blueprints need to be extended nationally, Rod Broadhurst writes.

In 2013 the digital blueprint of a single shot ‘Liberator’ 3D-printed plastic pistol was posted on the Internet by its creator, self-styled crypto-anarchist Cody Wilson, founder of the US non-profit gun-rights ‘wiki-weapons’ organisation Defense Distributed. Wilson’s controversial, undetectable 3D gun seemingly brought science fiction to reality.

The Liberator quickened interest in the auto-manufacture of novel or hybrid weapons, as well as government efforts to suppress do-it-yourself gun manufacture – even in ‘gun-friendly’ United States. In 2014, Defense Distributed subsequently released the ‘Ghost Gunner’, a Computer Numerical Control milling machine that makes untraceable, unserialised metal receivers or frames for the AR-15 and AR-308 rifles and the Browning M1911 pistol.

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Tags: cybercrime

Updated:  10 August 2017/Responsible Officer:  Director, RegNet/Page Contact:  Director, RegNet