Last week was Privacy Awareness Week, during which the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) ran a week long campaign focused on encouraging businesses large and small, governmental agencies and other organisations to ensure they have taken the appropriate steps to comply with the amended Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) (Privacy Act) and the Australian Privacy Principles (APPs). In doing so, the Information Commissioner drew attention to the “new teeth” of the OAIC, which enable it to investigate and penalise those organisations who fail to comply with the Privacy Act and/or the APPs.
Understandably, undertaking a wide review of your organisation’s privacy compliance may initially appear to be a confronting, time intensive and expensive exercise that need not be prioritised. In order to assist you in beginning this assessment, please click here for a copy of Lavan Legal’s Privacy Act Checklist: “Is your entity Privacy Savvy?”. The checklist outlines the basic requirements that have been introduced in the amended Privacy Act and provides helpful hints on how your organisation can go about ensuring compliance with those requirements in simple, straight-forward and cost effective ways.
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Ensuring that your organisation is complying with the amended Privacy Act does not have to be an onerous exercise. By taking steps now to implement internal procedures and policies for managing personal information and ensuring your staff understand when they can use, collect and disclose personal information, you can avoid any compliance issues down the track.