Trade Me today revealed it received 1508 requests for customer information from Police and 15 requests from the Security Intelligence Service (SIS) in the 2016 financial year.
The company’s 2016 Transparency Report also showed Trade Me had pushed back on 61 (or 4 percent) of the requests received from Police. This was up from 30 requests (or 1.6 percent) the previous year.
Trade Me says it pushed back on one of the 15 requests for customer information received from the SIS.
The 2016 Transparency Report is the company’s fourth report cataloguing government agency requests for customer information.
Privacy Commissioner John Edwards welcomed the report and praised the company’s continuing commitment to letting the public know how many requests for their data it was receiving from government agencies.
In its report, Trade Me also noted the Office of the Privacy Commissioner has been active in encouraging transparency reporting.
“I congratulate Trade Me on the report and the leadership role that Trade Me plays for transparency in New Zealand,” Mr Edwards said. “We hope that our work and Trade Me’s example will encourage more New Zealand companies to explore their own transparency reporting.
“Releasing clear, easy to understand information about how Trade Me interacts with the government is an important element in maintaining the trust of its many users. The report also sets a solid example for other businesses in New Zealand who want to start reporting on the customer information requests they receive.”
Last year, the Office of the Privacy Commissioner undertook a trial to gauge the extent of a role that the Privacy Commissioner could play in promoting and facilitating transparency reporting by New Zealand companies. The Office worked with 10 New Zealand businesses to gather three months’ worth of customer request information to help it and those businesses understand the amount of work involved and the nature of the customer requests received.
The Office will be repeating that trial this year with a more diverse group of businesses to gather more data. Internet NZ has also outlined plans to make this process easier for businesses, by designing reporting templates and creating tools to record requests.
For more information about the Office of the Privacy Commissioner’s transparency reporting trial, contact Charles Mabbett on 021 509 735.