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Welcome to our fortnightly digest, Privacy News.

Our view on the Intelligence and Security Bill

The Government is proposing to change New Zealand’s intelligence and security legislation. The draft law, the New Zealand Intelligence and Security Bill, is currently before Parliament’s Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee. Read our submission and others made to the select committee here.

International privacy and data protection conference

Privacy Commissioner John Edwards and Assistant Privacy Commissioner Blair Stewart are currently attending the International Conference of Data Protection and Privacy Commissioners (ICDPPC) in Marrakesh, Morocco, on 17-20 October.

The ICDPPC is an annual meeting of 110 data protection and privacy authorities from all over the world. New Zealand is currently the Chair of the conference. For more information about the ICDPPC, visit

Privacy Research Week in December

If you work in the privacy area or are interested in developments and trends in privacy thinking, you might want to be in Auckland during the week of 12-16 December. The Privacy Commissioner is naming it Privacy Research Week and our Office will be involved in all four events. Check out this line-up of conferences and forums:

We’ll keep you updated in coming newsletters as preparations continue for each of these events. Registration information is available at each of the four links above. 

Privacy, Security and Trust conference

The largest of the Privacy Research Week events is the 14th Annual Conference on Privacy, Security and Trust (PST2016). PST2016 runs from 12-14 December at Unitec in Auckland and begins with the NZ Industry Summit Day on 12 December at the Grand Millennium Hotel.

The Industry Summit Day’s theme is "What will a secure New Zealand look like in five years time?" Speakers will include:

  • Privacy Commissioner, John Edwards
  • Assistant Privacy Commissioner, Joy Liddicoat
  • Research Director of the Privacy and Big Data Institute at Ryerson University, Ali Miri
  • New Zealand Post Head of Agency Services and RealMe, Mandy Smith.

Register here to attend PST2016. Early bird registration closes on 31 October. 

New credit reporting e-learning module

We’ve added a new online learning module to our privacy education resources. Check out the new Credit Reporting Privacy Code module. It is now available alongside our Privacy 101 and Health 101 modules. Register now to use these free online training modules.

Our latest blog posts:

What’s in a face?
What’s in a face?
Author Sam Grover    Date published 6 October 2016

When an individual asks for privacy, what steps should an agency take to ensure that he or she is sufficiently anonymised? This was an issue that the Broadcasting Standards Authority (BSA) grappled with in a recent decision.

Read More
Fancy Bears hack shows spear phishing threat
Fancy Bears hack shows spear phishing threat
Author Charles Mabbett    Date published 7 October 2016

Nobody likes their health information being made public. But for Olympic athletes, this has become an occupational hazard as allegations of cheating and the use of performance-enhancing drugs are exchanged between those found to be guilty and those who are clean.

Read More
Reducing harm from family violence
Reducing harm from family violence
Author Becci Whitton    Date published 10 October 2016

As you may have seen in the news over the last couple of weeks, the Government has announced broad reforms of the Domestic Violence Act 1995, aimed at reducing the harm from New Zealand’s appalling rates of family violence.

Read More
Why you won't get a legal
Why you won't get a legal "opinion" from Enquiries
Author Karin Carter    Date published 11 October 2016

Callers to our Enquiries service often start with “I need some legal advice”. If the caller means guidance on his or her Privacy Act rights or the obligations of an agency, then we can help. But if by “legal advice” he or she means a legal “opinion” about how the Privacy Act might apply, then this is something our Enquiries service can’t do.

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Meeting international obligations on children’s rights
Meeting international obligations on children’s rights
Author Colin Trotter    Date published 17 October 2016

New Zealand’s progress in child welfare recently came under international scrutiny by the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC). Information sharing, Predictive Risk Modelling (PRM) and Approved Information Sharing Agreements (AISAs) were some of the current developments assessed by the Committee.

Read More
Life inside the Commissioner’s Office
Life inside the Commissioner’s Office
Author Abigail Vink    Date published 18 October 2016

It’s a month since I joined the bustling team at the Office of the Privacy Commissioner (OPC). What are my first impressions?

Read More


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PO Box 10 094, Wellington 6143
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