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Welcome to our fortnightly digest, Privacy News.

International privacy and data protection conference

The largest annual gathering of data protection and privacy regulators took place last month in Hong Kong. The International Conference of Data Protection and Privacy Commissioners meets annually to discuss international privacy developments and trends. A key topic this year was government information sharing, with a focus on protecting sensitive data, preventing discrimination and managing risk.

New Zealand Privacy Commissioner John Edwards chaired the Hong Kong conference which was attended by over 100 member authorities. The Conference also added new data protection members from Japan, Montenegro, South Africa, Turkey and Belgium. The chairing of the conference has now passed to the French regulator, CNIL, for a three-year term.

For more information including declarations and resolutions, visit the conference website or read reporting of the event by the financial media organisation MLex.

Are you doing business in Europe?

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a new European Union (EU) data privacy law. It comes into full effect on 25 May 2018.

The GDPR's main purpose is to create one coherent data protection framework across the EU. It will substantially enhance data protection and privacy rights in the EU, and imposes a comprehensive set of principles and obligations which businesses trading with EU will need to be aware of and comply with.

GDPR could affect New Zealand companies doing business with EU countries. New Zealand Trade and Enterprise has created this introductory resource to help NZ businesses.

KPMG and OPC panel on information sharing

Register now for this facilitated discussion on 2 November 2017 where public sector leaders will discuss what’s appropriate when sharing personal information. An important part of this conversation will be the safeguard and oversight mechanisms necessary to ensure people have confidence that their personal information is being respected.

The panel discussion - which is jointly hosted by KPMG and OPC - will also encompass the evolving conversation about the concept of a ‘social licence’ to share people’s information.  Privacy Commissioner John Edwards will facilitate the discussion.

More details and how to register can be found here.

Getting ready for NetHui

New Zealand’s biggest gathering of web and digital technology thinkers, professionals and non-professionals will be happening again this year and our office is involved. We’ll be contributing to a discussion session on Digital Divides and a session on Cryptography. NetHui, brought to you by InternetNZ, will be at the Aotea Centre in Auckland on 9-10 November.

More details and how to register can be found here.

PrivacyLive Forum on encryption 

Mark the date in your calendars for this PrivacyLive forum to be held in Wellington on 7 December 2017 between 12.30 and 2.00 pm.

Confirmed panellists are:

  • Cheryl Gwyn (Inspector General of Intelligence & Security)
  • Dr Ryan Ko (Cyber Research Centre; Waikato University)
  • Thomas Beagle (NZ Council for Civil Liberties)
  • Ben Creet (Internet NZ)
  • Ian Welch (Victoria University)
  • John Wesley-Smith (Spark NZ)

We hope to promote an informed public debate and wider public discussion about this developing issue particularly in light of international debate about encryption and whether it is impeding law enforcement activities.

Register here

Our latest blog posts:

Information about a car can be personal
Information about a car can be personal
Author Charles Mabbett    Date published 11 October 2017

You have the right not to remain silent – and that includes when you think you might have been overcharged for work done on your car.

Read More
Confirming a requester’s identity
Confirming a requester’s identity
Author Charles Mabbett    Date published 17 October 2017

Let’s recap. The Privacy Act gives people the right to access their information. And when a person requests their information, the organisation or business must respond to the request within 20 working days.

Read More
Making more use of AISAs
Making more use of AISAs
Author Colin Trotter    Date published 17 October 2017

Four years ago, there was a change to the Privacy Act to reflect a change in the Government’s information sharing framework. The Government made the change in response to recommendations by the Law Commission, as part of the commission’s review of New Zealand’s privacy law.

Read More


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