Story image

InternetNZ says the Privacy Bill is a good start, but New Zealand can do better

06 Jun 18

InternetNZ says the Privacy Bill currently in front of a select committee is a good start to revamping the Privacy Act, but it needs to go even further to be fit for the internet age.

Justice Minister Andrew Little says the Privacy Bill is designed “to promote and protect people’s privacy and to give them confidence that their personal information is properly protected.”

InternetNZ chief executive Jordan Carter says privacy matters more than ever in the age of big data and ubiquitous internet, but improvements are needed to keep privacy up to date.

"Privacy is an essential human right and the online world has brought many changes and challenges to how privacy works in the Internet age. This much-needed upgrade to our privacy law will help make our law fit for this decade and beyond,” Carter says.

InternetNZ adds that “The new Privacy Bill regulates the collection, use, and disclosure of information about individuals and has retained the Act’s 12 information privacy principles.”

Proposed changes include mandatory data breach disclosure with up to $10,000 fines for non-compliance, and the provisioning of more powers to the Privacy Commissioner.

Submissions on the Bill closed on May 24. Both the Office of the Privacy Commissioner and InternetNZ have made their submissions publicly available.

"We support the changes in the Bill but have also suggested some adjustments to make them more effective,” Carter says.

"Our submission introduces several new initiatives that are in part aimed at tackling developments since the Law Commission’s 2011 report, on which this Bill is based."

InternetNZ has suggested a number of changes, including:

Adapting ideas from the Europe’s GDPR and incorporating these where they make sense

Aligning Data breach notification rules to those of the EU and Australia

Giving New Zealanders a new right to know the purpose for which information is being held, as well as existing rights to the information itself (the ‘why’ as well as the ‘what’).

"With Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in effect, and changing privacy standards around the world, now is the right time for New Zealand to update our own privacy protections." says Carter.

"We would like to see Parliament get our Privacy Law fit for purpose and to see Select Committee take additional submissions on further reforms.

"We would support a later report-back of this Bill, and an additional consultation period, to support that outcome.

Read our previous coverage of the Privacy Bill proceedings here:

Commerce Commission report shows fibre is hot on the heels of copper
The report shows that as of 30 September 2018 there were 668,850 households and businesses connected to fibre, an increase of 45% from 2017.
Mac malware on WatchGuard’s top ten list for first time
The report is based on data from active WatchGuard Firebox unified threat management appliances and covers the major malware campaigns.
Big Bash Boom gives us cricket with power-ups
From the moment you hit play, you know that Big Bash Boom isn’t your usual cricket game. 
Bin 'em: Those bomb threat emails are complete hoaxes
A worldwide spate of spam emails claiming there is a bomb in the recipient’s building is almost certainly a hoax.
The tech that helped the first woman to sail around Australia
Lisa Blair used devices from supplied by Pivotel to aid her in becoming the first woman to circumnavigate Australia non-stop.
Marriott sets up call centres to answer questions on data breach
Marriott has released an update on the breach of the Starwood guest reservation data breach which affected 500 million guests.
How to stay safe when shopping online
Online shopping is a great way to avoid the crowds – but there are risks.
Hands-on review: The Logitech R500 laser presentation remote
With a clever ergonomic design, you’ll never have to glance at the device, unless you deliberately look to use the built-in laser pointer to emphasise your presentation.