OAIC releases APP guidelines

The Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) has today released the Australian Privacy Principles (APP) guidelines.

‘March 12 will see the biggest change in privacy law in 25 years, and the APP guidelines are an essential tool for the implementation of this change,’ said Australian Information Commissioner, Professor John McMillan.

The APPs are a single set of principles that will cover both the public and private sectors when amendments to the Privacy Act 1988 (Privacy Act) made by the Privacy Amendment (Enhancing Privacy Protection) Act 2012 come into force.

The introduction of the APPs is one of the significant changes under the new laws. Currently, Australian Government agencies are covered by the Information Privacy Principles, while the private sector are covered by the National Privacy Principles.

The APP guidelines will be a key resource for entities covered by the Privacy Act in assessing their compliance with the new laws.

‘We have put a lot of work into producing the APP guidelines, including extensive public consultation, so that we can maximise their usefulness to business and government,’ said Professor McMillan.

‘The APP guidelines not only outline minimum compliance requirements, they also provide practical examples of best practice.’

The Privacy Commissioner, Timothy Pilgrim, says that business and government should be ready for the change in law from 12 March.

‘The APP guidelines are not intended to be a step-by-step guide to developing compliant processes. Most of the requirements contained in the APPs are not new, and business and government should be ready to hit the ground running come March 12.’

In addition to publishing the APP Guidelines the OAIC will also be producing a practical tool that organisations can use to review their privacy policy. This tool will be ready in March.

The OAIC has released a video of Information Commissioner, Professor John McMillan announcing the release of the APP guidelines.

Watch the video

Read the APP guidelines

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