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New Australian privacy laws

If you’re an Australian company and collect, keep or use customer or client information then you need to be aware of new privacy legislation which takes effect from 12 March 2014.

The new privacy laws introduce a single set of standards called the Australian Privacy Principles (APPs) that specify when information can be used for direct marketing or be sent overseas.

PrivacyPenalties for failing to meet the new privacy laws could cost companies up to $1.7m.

In a recent interview, CEO of the Association for Data-driven Marketing and Advertising (ADMA), Jodie Sangster, said that she believed many of Australia’s larger and medium-sized companies are prepared for the changes, but was concerned about the readiness of smaller businesses and not-for-profit organisations, many of which don’t believe the privacy law changes apply to them.

Business Spectator reported that the 13 new APPs will apply to businesses with a turnover of at least $3 million, as well as government agencies; and after a range of interviews with industry leaders, it recommended businesses take a number of steps:

  1. Audit or assess their current customer information / data usage
  2. Develop and communicate their privacy policy
  3. Consider tools which may assist in better managing data
  4. Ensure staff are trained
  5. Take responsibility and understand how the new laws specifically affect them and their organisation

For detail on the new legislation and how it may impact on you or your business, visit the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner site.

Ben May

Ben is Managing Director of The Code Company. He is passionate about working with publishers on clever and innovative ways to solve complex problems. He works with The Code Company team on all projects, bringing his perspective and problem solving skills to deliver great outcomes.

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