Australian Privacy Law Changes Are Now In Full Swing
On 12th March 2014 new privacy legislation came into effect in Australia. Among the changes imposed with this new legislation are that new Australian Privacy Principles (APPs) apply to the collection and access of personal data.
Although the new APPs are not necessarily new, there are still significant changes to be aware of. The APPs cover:
• Notification that personal information is being collected
• Collection, use and disclosure of that information
• Secure maintenance of high quality information
• Access to and correction of personal information
The Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OIAC) thoroughly outlines the full set of APPs. Four key areas of change to highlight are:
• Notification – an organisation must have processes in place to notify individuals on a set of criteria upon collection of their personal data or soon after
• Personal information sent overseas must have appropriate arrangements with overseas recipients to ensure it is handled in accordance with the new APPs
• New rules on when personal information can be used or disclosed for the purpose of direct marketing; including the requirement for individuals to be provided with an easy way to opt out of marketing communications
Is your organisation compliant?
You will be affected if your organisation operates in Australia and collects personal information in some way or another; for example through a signup form on a website, an email communication, event registration or a survey.
What can you do? Start by completing a ‘Privacy impact assessment’ by evaluating your existing policies, procedures and systems. This handy checklist published by OIAC can help you evaluate the impacts of these changes on your organisation. The Association for data-driven marketing and advertising (ADMA) provide useful resources to help aid your understanding. Finally, this video by Professor John McMillan, Australian Information Commissioner provides a really clear summary of the reforms.
A win-win for customer and organisation
These exciting changes are a real step forward in Australian Privacy law and provide a far more robust approach to data privacy and security. It not only means greater customer protection, the clearer APPs help organisations understand what is required for compliance. Concep takes Privacy seriously and endeavours to keep you informed of Privacy changes across the globe.
This is not legal advice, you should consult with your own legal counsel to gain full understanding of the new laws and how they may impact you. Each country has its own set of rules and regulations which change over time.