Australia political leaders have called on tech companies to aid in the fight against terrorism by removing extremist content and breaking encryption. antonbe/Pixabay

Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Labor Party leader Bill Shorten have become the latest politicians to call on tech firms to take additional steps to combat extremist content and potentially break their own security protocols to aid in the effort to stop terrorist attacks.

"It is time for everyone to join the fight against terrorism," Shorten told reporters Tuesday in the wake of a terrorist attack in Melbourne. "It is time for Twitter, Facebook and Google to join the fight against terrorism."

Read: UK Law May Allow Government To Demand Backdoor In Encryption Apps

"We need to make it clear that everyone can do their part to keep our country and our people safe, and it is time for big internet to also join this fight," Shorten said.

The call from the leader of Australia’s opposition party echoed sentiments expressed by Turnbull, who said Monday that social media companies need to be more vigilant in policing content.

“There is too much tolerance of extremist material on social media and that, ultimately, requires cooperation from the big social media platforms, in particular Facebook and Twitter,” Turnbull said.

The prime minister went a step further than just pointing out the use of social media by terrorist organizations, taking aim at encrypted messaging apps, which he and other politicians have charged allow terrorists to organize and communicate in a way that makes them undetectable by law enforcement.

“The other area where we need these global social media messaging companies to assist is in providing access to encrypted communications, which are used by billions of people, of course, and applications like WhatsApp and Apple iMessage,” Turnbull said. “But the security services need to get access to them.”

Read: Top 5 Free Encryption Messaging Apps To Keep Your Conversations Secure

Facebook said it wants to make its platform "a hostile environment for terrorists" following the attack in London. A company spokesperson told Reuters it uses "a combination of technology and human review" to remove extremist content as quickly as possible. "If we become aware of an emergency involving imminent harm to someone's safety, we notify law enforcement," a spokesperson said.

Twitter has likewise increased its efforts to prevent terrorist organizations from using its platform to spread their message. The company suspended nearly 377,000 accounts for "violations related to the promotion of terrorism" in the last six months of 2016, and reported 74 percent of those bans were surfaced by automated tools rather than user reports.

The call to break encryption protocols that protect users of the messaging platforms and tighten rules around online content echoes previous sentiments expressed by British Prime Minister Theresa May. During the weekend, she called for the introduction of new rules to "deprive the extremists of their safe spaces online" and pressure on tech companies to take additional action.

May and other U.K. leaders have been pushing aggressively for tech companies to take more action to help law enforcement fight terrorism for some time. Following an attack in Westminster earlier this year, Home Secretary Amber Rudd took aim at WhatsApp after it was discovered the attacker possessed a smartphone and was apparently communicating with others through the encrypted messaging service.

Rudd called for platforms like WhatsApp, which is owned by Facebook, to cooperate in investigations in cases like the Westminster attack, and suggested encrypted communications allow terrorists to hide their conversations from law enforcement.

Former U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron suggested blocking encrypted messaging services unless they provide a government backdoor following the Charlie Hebdo shooting in 2015.

Last month, a leaked technical draft of the United Kingdom’s Investigatory Powers Act showed the government may have the ability to demand technology companies provide a backdoor into encrypted messaging services by forcing companies to maintain and disclose user data when requested by law enforcement.