Australian Government

 

Privacy

Thank you for visiting BoardLinks, an online service managed by the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet.

The primary role of the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet (the Department) is to provide high-quality policy and implementation advice and support to the Prime Minister, the Cabinet, our Portfolio Ministers, and the Government as a whole.

The Department also has responsibility over the following policy areas:

  • indigenous policies, programmes and service delivery;
  • advice, consultation and support that will provide benefits for women;
  • the removal of unnecessary and/or ill designed regulation.

More information about the Department.

The Department’s privacy obligations

As an Australian Government agency, the Department is bound by the standards, rights and obligations in relation to the handling and maintenance of personal information in the Privacy Act 1988 (Privacy Act). The Privacy Act defines personal information as information or an opinion about an identified individual, or an individual who is reasonably identifiable whether it is true or not and whether it is recorded in a material form or not.

The Australian Privacy Principles (APPs) contained in the Privacy Act set out the Department’s obligations in relation to the collection, storage, use, disclosure, quality and security of personal information and access and correction rights of individuals in relation to their personal information.

Under the APPs, the Department is required to have a clearly expressed and up-to-date policy about its obligations under the Privacy Act, including management of personal information collected and held by the Department.  The privacy policy may be accessed on the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet website. Schedule 1 of the privacy policy outlines the kinds of personal information collected and held by the Department and the purposes for which the personal information is collected, held, used and disclosed.  An example of the information provided in Schedule 1 is provided at the end of this document.

How the Department collects and holds personal information

The Department may collect personal information from the individual directly, the individual’s representative or a third party. The Department collects personal information in the following ways:

  • information solicited by the Department through written instruments, online electronic communications and telephone communications;
  • correspondence and documents sent to the Department;
  • information given by other agencies and organisations for purposes relating to the functions of the Department; and
  • publicly available sources.

The Department takes steps to protect information, including personal information, against loss, unauthorised access, use, modification or disclosure, and against other misuse. These steps include password protection for accessing the Department’s electronic system, paper files in locked cabinets and physical and electronic access restrictions based on a “need to know basis.” Officers are also required to assess the consequences of damage from unauthorised disclosure or misuse of information and apply appropriate security classifications to documents they create or handle. When personal information collected by the Department is no longer required, it is stored, managed or destroyed consistent with the Archives Act 1983.

Access and correction

You have a right to request access to the personal information the Department holds about you and to request its correction in accordance with APPs 12 and 13.

The Privacy Act permits access to be refused in certain cases, including where an exemption under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI Act) would apply.

To request access to or correction of your personal information held by the Department, you can contact the Department’s Privacy Contact Officer using the details outlined at the ‘How to contact us’ section below. Discussing the nature of your request with the Department’s Privacy Contact Officer will enable the Department to provide guidance on whether your request is better dealt with under the Privacy Act, the FOI Act or another arrangement, and will likely vary depending on your circumstances.

Privacy complaints

If you think the Department has breached the APPs, you may contact our Privacy Contact Officer, whose contact details are at the ‘How to contact us’ section below. Your complaint should include a brief description of your privacy concerns, any action or dealings you have had with an officer of the Department to address your concerns and your preferred contact details. If you provide your contact details, the Department’s Privacy Contact Officer will then contact you to address your concerns.

Alternatively, you can make a complaint to the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) about your privacy concerns. The OAIC can investigate privacy complaints from individuals about Australian, ACT and Norfolk Island government agencies, and private sector organisations covered by the Privacy Act.

Before you can lodge a complaint with the OAIC, you will generally need to complain directly to the Department and allow 30 days for our response. If you do not receive a response (after 30 days), or you are dissatisfied with it, you may then complain to the OAIC. Complaints to the OAIC must be made in writing. The OAIC can receive privacy complaints through the following:

Online form: OAIC Privacy Complaint Form
Email: enquiries@oaic.gov.au
Post: The Privacy Commissioner
Office of the Australian Commissioner
GPO Box 2999
CANBERRA ACT 2601
Facsimile (02) 9284 9666

How to contact us

Contact info@boardlinks.gov.au if you want to:

  • ask questions about the Department’s Privacy Policy;
  • query how your personal information is collected, held, used, stored or disclosed by the Department;
  •  obtain access to or seek correction of your personal information held by the Department; or
  • make a privacy complaint about the Department.

Schedule 1

Departmental Division and Branch

Purpose of collection

Kinds of personal information the Department collects and holds

To whom disclosures are made outside the Department (if applicable)

Social Policy Division, Office for Women

To maintain a database of women seeking appointment to Government boards

Name, contact details, potentially sensitive personal information such as CALD, disability or Indigenous status, CV (possibly including referee details).

Other Commonwealth departments, ministers and their offices