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Refreshed privacy guidance for government now available

The Government Chief Privacy Officer (GCPO) in the Digital Public Service branch has provided its refreshed suite of privacy guidance on Digital.govt.nz for agencies ahead of the new Privacy Act 2020 live on 1 December.

The GCPO supports government agencies to meet their privacy responsibilities and improve their privacy practices. This new refreshed guidance takes a holistic approach and aims to help both new and experienced privacy officers across government develop and gain buy-in for their agency’s privacy programmes, while providing a solid foundation for future guidance.

Some of the key topics covered in the guidance include:

The new Privacy Act 2020 replaces the existing Privacy Act 1993 with new protections, rules, and powers for the Privacy Commissioner, so privacy for agencies will come under the spotlight in new ways. Read more on the Privacy Commissioner’s website – Parliament passes modernised Privacy Act.

The passing of the new Act is the culmination of work that began in 2011 with a review by the Law Commission. The review recommended numerous changes be made to modernise the existing Privacy Act 1993, which was passed when many aspects of our modern digital lives, such as mobile phones and home computers, were rare and the Internet was only available to very few people.

The new Privacy Act 2020 continues to protect New Zealander’s privacy with the existing rules about how government agencies, companies and individuals must protect personal information and have good reasons to collect it, while adding new rules and powers to help enforce the Privacy Act.

The Office of the Privacy Commissioner is producing detailed guidance for the major changes to the Privacy Act, including sharing of information overseas and the introduction of the Commissioner’s new powers with Compliance Orders. The Office’s website has made available new guidance and training modules.

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