The ABC reported this week the Senate inquiry found “government agencies should have to prove ‘real and serious’ harm caused by the publication of classified intelligence and information before a criminal investigation can be launched”. Donate today and support non-profit news. The Senate inquiry’s report said: Without such a requirement, the provisions would be susceptible to overuse, misuse or even abuse. In particular, the absence of an express harm requirement can lead to circumstances where a journalist is prosecuted for a very minor or trivial ‘dealing’ with classified information. When giving evidence to the inquiry, the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO) was asked to provide any examples of when a publication had demonstrably harmed Australian national security. ASIO could not produce a single example.