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Welcome to our fortnightly digest, Privacy News.

Privacy Commissioner: Facebook must comply with NZ Privacy Act

The Privacy Commissioner says Facebook has breached the Privacy Act 1993. The Commissioner’s finding comes after Facebook refused a complainant access to personal information held on the accounts of several other Facebook users.

The social media company said the Privacy Act did not apply to it and it did not have to comply with the Commissioner’s request to review the information requested by the complainant.

The Commissioner found Facebook was subject to the Privacy Act and had fundamentally failed to engage with the Act. He says Facebook’s position that the Privacy Act did not apply to it was surprising and contrary to its own Data Policy in regards to responding to legal requests for any personal information it held.

Read the media release here

Register to attend the 2018 Privacy Forum      

The 2018 Privacy Forum will be a day of privacy-related discussion with many of the leading privacy exponents in New Zealand.  The forum will be at Te Papa Tongarewa in Wellington on 9 May 2018.

A focus of this year's forum will be the new Privacy Bill. There will be discussions on how privacy law will change in New Zealand and what agencies can expect to have to comply with it. There will also be sessions on the GDPR and predictive risk modelling.

We're pleased to announce the forum will be opened by the Minister of Justice, Andrew Little.

Early bird tickets are available for $210 until 14 April. The regular ticket price is $260. We are offering a discounted rate of $50 per person for community and social work NGOs and charitable organisations. There are 35 places for organisations that qualify for this rate. 

The Privacy Forum programme will be finalised shortly. A draft programme is now available here. Register here to attend. 

Working towards trusted data use

Join us for this PrivacyLive lunchtime forum and learn about the Data Futures Partnership’s Guidelines for Trusted Data Use from one of its authors, Professor Rhema Vaithianathan, in Auckland on 11 April 2018.

The Guidelines for Trusted Data Use were created for the Data Futures Partnership and set out key questions New Zealanders expect to be answered before they are comfortable sharing their personal information.

This PrivacyLive event is on from 12.30pm-1.30pm at the Pioneer Women’s Hall, Ellen Melville Centre, Freyberg Place (off High St), Central Auckland.

Register to attend this free event here.

Wanted: Assistant Commissioner (Policy and Operations)

The Assistant Commissioner (Policy and Operations) leads the largest group of staff in our close knit organisation. The role’s key purpose is to develop and lead high performing teams, lift capability, and enhance cohesion and effectiveness across the organisation. If you would like to know more about the role (and to apply), find out more here. The deadline for applications is 5pm, 5 April 2018.  

.nz Domain Name Privacy

The .nz domain name space has recently changed to give individuals a privacy choice. The feature, known as the Individual Registrant Privacy Option, allows individual registrants of .nz domain names to withhold some of their contact information from the .nz domain name register.

This new service began on 28 March 2018. The addition of the Privacy Option comes at a time of increasing global focus on online privacy, and the upcoming reform of New Zealand’s Privacy Act.

Further information on the Individual Registrant Privacy Option can be found here on the Domain Name Commission’s website. 

GDPR compliance for New Zealand

Join Microsoft and iappANZ for breakfast in Auckland on 11 April 2018 to hear some top privacy practitioners and business leaders discuss how to prepare for the GDPR. From 25 May 2018, many agencies will face a host of new and significant privacy obligations. Not least under the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation will be the requirement to notify European privacy regulators of a data breach.

This is a great opportunity to get a real handle on GDPR and share your stories and thoughts with colleagues.  Find out more, including how to register to attend, here.  

Our latest blog posts:

Why I deleted Facebook
Why I deleted Facebook
Author John Edwards    Date published 3 April 2018

I’ve been on Facebook for nearly 10 years. I wasn’t that keen on it at first, as I kept getting pestered by digital agriculturalists using the needy Farmville game.

Read More
Facebook: What this is really about
Facebook: What this is really about
Author John Edwards    Date published 3 April 2018

As New Zealand’s Privacy Commissioner, I need to take a moment to tell you what this matter is really about.

Read More


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Office of the Privacy Commissioner
PO Box 10 094, Wellington 6143
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