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A new Privacy Trust Mark will give New Zealanders assurance that a product or service has been designed with their privacy interests in mind, says Privacy Commissioner John Edwards.

Mr Edwards today launched his office’s Privacy Trust Mark at the 2018 Privacy Forum at Te Papa, Wellington, and announced the first two trust mark recipients. The launch of the Privacy Trust Mark coincides with Privacy Week (7-11 May), an Asia Pacific- wide awareness week highlighting the importance of privacy and personal information management.

Mr Edwards says the awards recognise excellence in privacy-friendly products or services. The Privacy Trust Mark demonstrates that a “privacy by design” approach was used and it is intended to give consumers confidence in particular products or services.

The first product and service to be awarded a Privacy Trust Mark are Trade Me’s ‘Transparency Reporting’ and the Department of Internal Affairs’ RealMe identity verification service.

“Trade Me is the only New Zealand agency who participates in transparency reporting, above and beyond what is required of it by law. I am particularly impressed with the way Trade Me draws wider privacy issues into its transparency reports as a way of keeping the public informed of topical issues,” Mr Edwards said.

The Department of Internal Affairs’ RealMe service was also assessed as meeting the Privacy Trust Mark criteria. “RealMe's data minimisation and user control practices are excellent. Users can control when and where their identity information is shared and can review all of their transactions and revoke their consent at their discretion. RealMe also only collects and stores information that is required to administer the core service.”

Mr Edwards says he hopes the awards will be the start of many more Privacy Trust Marks. “This project is part of our vision to help consumers to have trust and confidence that their information will be safeguarded. It will also make it easier for people to make choices for privacy-friendly goods and services.”

David Philp, General Manager Partners and Products at the Department of Internal Affairs, says he’s pleased RealMe is the first government service to earn the Privacy Trust Mark. “RealMe has robust privacy and security measures, and allows users to control when and where their information is shared at all times. It is great to see this commitment to customer privacy recognised by the Privacy Commissioner, especially with the current focus on trust in government.”

If you think your organisation has a product or service that demonstrates excellence in privacy and deserves to be awarded with a Privacy Trust Mark, contact the Office of the Privacy Commissioner. The FAQs accompanying this media release includes more information about this initiative.

The Privacy Trust Mark logo was created by a Christchurch graphic designer, Curtis Bain. Mr Bain’s design was the winner of the Office of the Privacy Commissioner’s Privacy Trust Mark Design Competition held earlier this year.

A PDF copy of this media release is available here.

There's also more information in our Privacy Trust Mark FAQs. 

If your organisation wants to apply for a Privacy Trust Mark for a product or service, find out how to do so here.

For more information, contact Charles Mabbett 021 509 735.