Victorian Asbestos Eradication Agency

Privacy policy

Introduction

Victoria's privacy laws and principles https://www.cpdp.vic.gov.au/index.php regulate how Victorian government bodies use and disclose personal information in Victoria. They provide for the collection, use, disclosure, transfer, access, correction and disposal of personal information.

The VAEA is bound by these laws when handling any personal information.

Personal information means ‘information or an opinion (including information or an opinion forming part of a database), that is recorded in any form and whether true or not, about an individual whose identity is apparent, or can reasonably be ascertained, from the information or opinion’.

Information may be collected by the VAEA directly from an individual, by other government departments/agencies or by contracted service providers acting on behalf of the VAEA. The VAEA contracted service providers are required to comply with the privacy principles contained in Victorian privacy laws.

Collection, anonymity and unique identifiers

We collect personal information if it is necessary for us to carry out our functions or activities. The VAEA may collect personal information about an individual in a number of situations, including (but not limited to):

  • receiving or handling of complaints, reports and requests for information from members of the public, other government department or agencies, or the Minister;
  • receiving or processing requests for access to information made under freedom of information laws;
  • in the supply of products or services;
  • applications for a job or employment with the VAEA;
  • response to surveys, participation in focus groups, events or research undertaken by or on behalf of the VAEA;
  • referrals from other agencies or authorities;
  • visiting the VAEA’s website or communicating with the VAEA, including online.

Information may be collected by the VAEA directly from an individual, by other government departments/agencies or by contracted service providers acting on behalf of the VAEA. The VAEA contracted service providers are required to comply with the privacy principles contained in Victorian privacy laws.

When the VAEA collects personal information from individuals, the VAEA provides them with information identifying it and about:

  • the purposes for which personal information is collected
  • the types of persons and organisations to which such information would usually be disclosed
  • any law that requires, authorises or permits its collection
  • any consequences if the information is not provided, and
  • the person’s rights of access to that information.

This information is set out in the collection statement on the relevant forms, registration or any other document/mechanism used to collect their information. If, it is necessary for us to collect, use or disclose information in circumstances that are not covered in that collection statement, we will try to ensure that the individual is made aware of how and why we need to use that information. However, the VAEA is not required to do this in a number of situations, including (but not limited to):

  • where the VAEA has the express or implied consent of the individual;
  • where the VAEA is otherwise required, authorised or permitted by law to do so;
  • when the VAEA receives information in confidence;
  • where the information is collected in connection with legal proceedings;
  • where doing so would pose a serious threat to the life or health of any individual.

Use and disclosure

Personal and health information is used and/or disclosed for the primary purpose for which it was collected and in connection with the administration or enforcement of the WIRC Act, the OHS Act 2004 and associated laws and regulations and in accordance with any other applicable law or any applicable Public Interest Determination, Information Usage Arrangement or Certification issued by the Victorian Commissioner for Privacy and Data Protection.

Potential uses of personal information include, but are not limited to:

  • preparing responses to parliamentary questions or inquiries, independent regulators, ministerial correspondence;
  • purposes required, authorised or permitted by law (e.g. taxation, centrelink, courts);
  • other purposes authorised/consented by the individual themselves.

Personal information collected may be disclosed to others, including to:

  • approved service providers, consultants and contracted service providers,
  • lawyers and other professional advisers engaged by the VAEA
  • courts or tribunals and other regulatory authorities (in Victoria or interstate)
  • government agencies and private organisations that can assist the VAEA detect improper or unlawful claims, invoices for the provision or delivery of services or products and prevent fraud;
  • for purposes of responding to parliament, independent regulators, ministerial correspondence or others;
  • if required, authorised or permitted by law (e.g. freedom of information (FOI) laws, subpoena, notice to produce, etc);
  • other purposes authorised by the individual themselves.

This list is not exhaustive and the above uses/disclosures are not mutually exclusive. Ultimately, the context (background and surrounding circumstances) of each case is important in determining whether user or disclosure is lawful or in compliance with privacy principles.

Data quality and security

The VAEA takes reasonable steps to ensure that personal information held is accurate, complete and up-to-date.

Personal information is stored and retained in accordance with the applicable records retention and disposal schedule (see Public Records Office of Victoria at www.prov.vic.gov.au or call 9348 5600 or email enquiries@prov.vic.gov.au). Some records are maintained for short periods after a matter has been finalised, other records, for example, personnel files are held for longer periods.

The VAEA takes reasonable steps to protect the personal information it holds from misuse and loss and from unauthorised access, modification or disclosure. What are reasonable security measures varies according to the circumstances.

Website and e-mail

VAEA owns and operates a website under the domain name (insert domain name). We encourage people to use our Website to find out information about us and to contact us. The VAEA takes reasonable steps to protect that information from misuse, loss and from unauthorised access, modification or disclosure. If you are concerned about conveying sensitive material to us over the internet, you might prefer to contact us by telephone or post.

Please note that there are risks in transmitting information across the Internet. So while the VAEA endeavours to protect personal information, it cannot ensure or warrant the security of any information transmitted to it online and individuals do so at their own risk. Any information that is added to our or any other website can be picked up and stored on the internet by search engines like Google or Yahoo. This is not in the VAEA’s control, but is an automatic process. The VAEA does not endorse or take any responsibility for external (third party) sites you visit via links to its websites

Reviewed 15 October 2019