Can the Australian government compel me to sabotage the Australian software for their uses within Australia, and if so, can the Austrian government charge me with a crime for having done it while living in Austria?
The fact that I even have to ask this kind of question enrages me. I'm considering giving up my Australian citizenship over this, it is that infuriating.
The short answer is:
1. Non-compliance with a TAN/TCN is a civil not a criminal mater
2. As I stated above the law clearly says that it is a defence for non-compliance if a TAN/TCN would compel you to commit a crime in a foreign country. The issue is whether you can be compelled to commit an act in Australia, which would be a crime in a foreign country.
3. Consideration must be given to your legitimate interests.
In short, if you get a TAN/TCN then seek legal advice.
I agree that a lot of people seem to be catastrophizing this, but it still seems like a pretty big mess.
If I end up writing a little library and it gets popular, who's to say the spooks won't decide that's where they want the backdoor, and just send me a TAN to the email on my GitHub profile? Very likely not, but it is possible and would cost me at least several thousand dollars in legal bills to figure out how to respond.
Wonder if it will be possible to be insured against receiving such a request for foreigners (and maybe even Australians) who work on software that the Australian government would like to backdoor. To cover any possible fines for noncompliance but also, if you do want to use the "it's a crime in my country" defense, to deal with the complication and expense of hiring an Australian lawyer to represent you.
Note that they can always revoke the request they gave you and request a new one. So they can fine you an infinite amount of money and drive you to bankruptcy if they want to. Now, it's possible this would be seen as an abuse of power but you'd need to go to court over it and you can't afford lawyers nearly expensive as the government's.
> If I end up writing a little library and it gets popular, who's to say the spooks won't decide that's where they want the backdoor, and just send me a TAN to the email on my GitHub profile? Very likely not, but it is possible and would cost me at least several thousand dollars in legal bills to figure out how to respond.
TCN, not TAN.
So I feel strongly enough about the tyranny and evil of the Australian government that it looks like I'm going to be giving up my Australian citizenship.
"We will not approve your application to renounce your citizenship if you do not have another foreign citizenship or it is not in Australia’s interests." [emphasis added]
What an extraordinarily evil thing for the Australian government to have done to its citizens.
Well then, some other options:
0. Do the typical Australian thing: "she'll be right mate!", and stick my head in the sand, hoping that ignoring the bad man will make him go away. This seems to work for a lot of Australians, so might work for me. Could be, I'll never be the subject of a TAN/TCN, but then again, why risk it.
1. I could change my profession. However, this would mean that over time, only the types of people who are willing to act as repressive agents of the Australian government would be found in the software industry. This is really a non-savoury outcome, as I have over 30 years in the software industry and am very proud of the good I have done in this field - I would hate to turn it over to such cunts who think its fine to spy for the Australian Fascist Overlords. I know they're out there - people like me are keeping them from taking over, completely.
(A brief moment of brevity for the poor Australians reading this: Fuck. The Australian Government is literally Auntie Jack. If I don't do what she tells me to, she's gonna jump out of my computer and rip my bloody arms off. )
2. Do the paperwork: get my second citizenship, abandon the Australian citizenship, do everything I can to protest Australia and never, ever, contribute to its well-being ever again - this means never going back, removing my assets and resources from the Australian economy, and so on. Hmmm.
3. Submit to a TAN/TCN when/if it happens, but somehow sabotage the work such that it doesn't quite work out. The True Aussie Way™.
4. Insist on working only on software that never tracks the user in any way, whatsoever. This would mean quitting my current job, which already involves tracking people (with their full approval) for productive (non-espionage/law-enforcement) purposes, and finding something with a strict no-data policy.
I guess I'm gonna go with #4. Well, #2 seems a bit more appealing, actually.
Please, I beg of you .. let me walk tall in Australia! 
 - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KnEOr1MgwTM
 - https://youtu.be/8PfDro1UGUo?t=158
Sorry, due to your part in voting for that bill, you're now in breach of our terms. Please return your devices as well.
Mentioning that they may need to shut down services in Australia due to the law might be enough to cause a backlash.
Our left-leaning party voted for this fucking bullshit too, remember. Jacinda Ardern probably isn't going to save you.
To do that you really need to know what the law actually says and requires. Here is a start: TCN/TAN are not limited to Australian citizens. Revoking your citizenship will not shield you from being issued a TCN/TAN, but will lessen the value of your voice in engineering change.
That has nothing to do with whether you are an Australian citizen or not. If you are a resident in Austria, these laws do not allow the government to compel you to commit a crime in Austria.
Keep this in mind: The Australian government is still ripping children from their parents.
If software that I am involved in is in any way responsible for assisting that, in any way, I would be more than furious to say the least.
Nope, its Option #2 for me. Australia can go to hell.
And if they do try it, any of your non-Australian colleagues who review your code can immediately raise the alarm.
The law is ridiculous not only because of all the points they're making, but also because it just doesn't work in a modern, distributed, company. They need to compel the entire dev team to do as they wish to avoid it being stopped at some point, and if just one of those devs are not Australian (or even not living in Australia) then the secrecy part is blown and the company can take preventative action to stop this happening.
Australia has just ensured that every single Australian tech company needs a non-Australian to review its code. An absolute decrease in Australian security. The Law of Unintended Consequences strikes agan.
Okay, so this just pushes the problem onto someone elses plate - the operator/sysadmin. I've known a few Australian operators. The law doesn't specifically target 'only people who can write code' - it applies to anyone who has access to the systems the Australian kooks and spooks want to infiltrate.
If you're already overseas (including NZ), it should be a pretty easy ride:
"You may be eligible to apply if you ... will acquire citizenship of another country as soon as your application to renounce Australian citizenship is approved" 
From what I remember, there's basically an agreement between all countries stating that a stateless person in your borders must be offered safe harbour... or something to that affect, and that might be triggering the "We will not approve your application to renounce your citizenship if you do not have another foreign citizenship" spiel.
Talk to a lawyer to get it straight though.
If you think the law effects you then I highly recommend reading the entire text, as passed by parliament: https://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/search/display/display....
I know less about the law than other posters, but I don't think there's much of an inference in the legislation of these notices being contingent on nationality or citizenship when you're overseas. If the bill transcends borders like that then there's surely no end. Seeing as it's as broad a net as "software serving end users in Australia", it could literally affect millions of people/nationals/workers outside Aus borders, and have catastrophic economic consequences at which point the whole insane thing unravels and the absurdity of it becomes clear.
But yeah, you and me both man, as soon as I'm able I'll try and fall on my dual citizenship, if it's not too late by then. This is infuriating both in terms of ethics and logistics
More importantly, it looks like you've been using HN primarily for political and ideological arguments. That's an abuse of this site, because it destroys the intellectual curiosity that it exists for. So we ban accounts that do this.
If you'd please review https://news.ycombinator.com/newsguidelines.html and use HN as intended from now on, we'd appreciate it.
I've been subject to these site rules myself, and felt my ire rise when it happens that I've been on the wrong side of them (with political discussions), but this particular response absolutely infuriated me and I am grateful for the rules being applied in my favour, for once.