Privacy complaint checker
The Complaint Checker will ask you a series of questions about your complaint to help you work out if the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) can investigate your complaint.
On this page
What is the Complaint Checker?
The Complaint Checker asks you up to eight simple questions to help you check whether or not the OAIC may be able to investigate your complaint.
The Complaint Checker can only give you general advice that will apply in most circumstances. You should not rely upon this information as legal advice.
If you are still unsure about whether or not the OAIC can investigate your complaint, or if you would like to discuss the information provided in the Complaint Checker, please call our Enquiries Line.
We have used the following abbreviations in the Complaint Checker:
- Privacy Act — for the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth)
- Commissioner — for the Australian Information Commissioner
- Respondent — for the agency or organisation your complaint is about
What does the Complaint Checker cover?
The Complaint Checker applies to complaints about:
- Australian Government agencies (in relation to the Australian Privacy Principles)
- private sector organisations (businesses and not-for-profits) (in relation to the Australian Privacy Principles or Credit reporting)
- ACT public sector agencies (in relation to the Territory Privacy Principles).
What is not covered by the Complaint Checker?
You can also make a complaint to the OAIC about:
- the handling of eHealth records, healthcare identifiers, genetic information and health and medical research and the medicare and pharmaceutical benefits schemes
- the handling of some criminal records (spent convictions)
- the handling of personal information on the Personal Property Securities Register
- data-matching by Australian Government agencies using tax file numbers and the use of tax file numbers more generally.
It is important to remember:
- Before lodging your complaint with the OAIC you should first contact to the respondent about your complaint, so that it has an opportunity to resolve your complaint.
- You should allow the respondent a reasonable time to respond to your complaint. Generally the OAIC considers a month a reasonable time, however more complex matters may take longer to resolve.
- If you receive no response from the respondent or it has not resolved your privacy complaint to your satisfaction, you can then lodge your complaint with the OAIC.