Wednesday, 15 February 2017 08:46

Privacy czar says data breach bill will protect citizens


Australian Information and Privacy Commissioner Timothy Pilgrim has welcomed the passage of a bill on mandatory notification of data breaches by the federal Parliament.

The Privacy Amendment (Notifiable Data Breaches) Bill 2016 was passed by the Senate on Monday night.

Pilgrim said he looked forward to working with government, business and consumer groups as the new scheme came into place. He said it would "help protect the privacy rights of individuals, and strengthen community trust in businesses and agencies".

He said the amendment would require government agencies and businesses covered by the Privacy Act to notify any individuals affected by a data breach that was likely to result in serious harm.

"My office will be advised of these breaches, and can determine if further action is required.  The law also gives me the ability to direct an agency or business to notify individuals about a serious data breach."

In the interim, Pilgrim said agencies and businesses should take reasonable steps to ensure personal information was held securely and be prepared with a plan in the event of a data breach.

"The OAIC’s Data breach notification – a guide to handling personal information security and Guide to developing a data breach response plan provide a best practice model, and will be updated in consultation with stakeholders ahead of the commencement of the mandatory notification scheme. The OAIC also has a comprehensive Guide to securing personal information," he said.

Rajiv Shah, director, Cyber, Intelligence and Security of BAE Systems, said: "The passing of the Notifiable Data Breaches Bill by the Senate provides much needed clarity on the responsibilities of organisations and should kick-start a culture of information sharing needed to defend against cyber criminals.

"The Notifiable Data Breaches Bill shows clear leadership, crucial to breaking down an existing culture of denial as to the scope and scale of cyber-attacks, which is hampering efforts to combat the activities of cyber criminals.

"The new laws balance the need for consumers and businesses to know if their data has been compromised by a breach in a timely and clear way, while also not over-burdening organisations.

"Ultimately, what we have is a well-balanced privacy framework which provides a more transparent environment for Australians to entrust their personal information to organisations.

"There’s a significant trust benefit to be gained from mandatory notification. By preserving public confidence and participation in the digital economy, the nation will continue to benefit from the associated economic growth and prosperity."

Another security professional, Fergus Brooks, cyber national practice leader of global risk management firm Aon, said: "We welcome the Senate's decision to pass the legislation as it highlights the need for organisations to have a cyber incident response plan – now.

"The implications of a data breach can be financially crippling and can cause severe brand and reputational damage if not acted upon.

"It's due to come into effect within 12 months and organisations must act proactively now to manage their cyber risks to reduce the frequency and severity of a breach, and the reputational fallout."

The privacy commissioner's office was notified of 107 data breaches in 2015-16. The top five sectors affected were the federal government, the finance industry (including superannuation providers), health service providers, retail outlets and online services.

Please join our community here and become a VIP.

Subscribe to ITWIRE UPDATE Newsletter here
JOIN our iTWireTV our YouTube Community here


It's all about Webinars.

Marketing budgets are now focused on Webinars combined with Lead Generation.

If you wish to promote a Webinar we recommend at least a 3 to 4 week campaign prior to your event.

The iTWire campaign will include extensive adverts on our News Site and prominent Newsletter promotion and Promotional News & Editorial. Plus a video interview of the key speaker on iTWire TV which will be used in Promotional Posts on the iTWire Home Page.

Now we are coming out of Lockdown iTWire will be focussed to assisting with your webinatrs and campaigns and assassistance via part payments and extended terms, a Webinar Business Booster Pack and other supportive programs. We can also create your adverts and written content plus coordinate your video interview.

We look forward to discussing your campaign goals with you. Please click the button below.



iTWire TV offers a unique value to the Tech Sector by providing a range of video interviews, news, views and reviews, and also provides the opportunity for vendors to promote your company and your marketing messages.

We work with you to develop the message and conduct the interview or product review in a safe and collaborative way. Unlike other Tech YouTube channels, we create a story around your message and post that on the homepage of ITWire, linking to your message.

In addition, your interview post message can be displayed in up to 7 different post displays on our the site to drive traffic and readers to your video content and downloads. This can be a significant Lead Generation opportunity for your business.

We also provide 3 videos in one recording/sitting if you require so that you have a series of videos to promote to your customers. Your sales team can add your emails to sales collateral and to the footer of their sales and marketing emails.

See the latest in Tech News, Views, Interviews, Reviews, Product Promos and Events. Plus funny videos from our readers and customers.


Sam Varghese

Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

Share News tips for the iTWire Journalists? Your tip will be anonymous