ABS Privacy Policy for Managing and Operating Our Business

About this policy

This Privacy Policy sets out how we handle personal information that is collected for managing and operating within the ABS, consistent with the Privacy Act 1988 (Privacy Act) and the Australian Privacy Principles. This policy covers personal information that may be collected if you use an ABS product or service, provide a product or service to us, lodge a query or complaint, work for us, or apply for a job with us.

We have a separate privacy policy that sets out how we handle personal information that is collected for the analysis and production of statistics. This includes personal information collected through the Census of Population and Housing, other ABS surveys, and data acquired by the ABS from other organisations.

Why do we collect personal information to manage and operate our business?

To help administer our business operations including when we coordinate, produce and distribute statistics; respond to data requests and maintain employee records.

Your personal information for managing and operating our business

The kind of personal information we collect

We collect personal information only to coordinate our activities as a statistical agency or in our role as an employer.

To see what types of personal information we collect for these different activities and how long we keep that information, please see ‘Your personal information - managing and operating our business’ page

How we collect personal information

We collect personal information directly from you to support our business operations. This includes when you apply for a job with the ABS, as a user of ABS services and when you request information or lodge a complaint.

Keeping your personal information safe

We take the security of your personal information seriously. We set high standards for protecting your privacy, and the security and confidentiality of your information.

We secure all our information in accordance with the Protective Security Policy Framework. The cyber security controls for our IT systems comply with the Australian Signals Directorate's (ASD) Information Security Manual. ABS systems that store and process statistical data are subjected to independent security assessments by independent ASD certified security assessors.

We comply with the Privacy Act and the Archives Act 1983 in the storage, use and destruction of your personal information collected for managing and operating our business.

We partner with trusted third-parties

We sometimes contract third-party providers to support our business operations, such as completing reference checks for recruitment purposes. These third-party providers are legally bound to meet privacy standards and our expectations. They will also have their own privacy policies, processes and security protections which we review to ensure their approach to privacy reflects our own.

How we use your personal information

We use your personal information only for the purposes for which it was given to us. These can include:

  • Maintaining employee and recruitment records.
  • Keeping you informed and involved in ABS activities and initiatives.
  • Assessing your requests to use ABS products like TableBuilder or DataLab.
  • Consulting with you on our products and statistical collections.
  • Responding to complaints, Freedom of Information requests and other inquiries.

We will not share your personal information

The ABS will not share any personal information in a way that is likely to identify you unless:

  • We are returning it to you
  • You have consented
  • You would reasonably expect, or have been told, that we usually disclose information of this kind
  • We are required under law. For example if you make a privacy complaint about the ABS to the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner, we may be required to supply your personal information to support the investigation

The ABS will not disclose personal information to any overseas entity without your consent.

Access and correct your personal information

You have the right to request access to and correction of your personal information collected for managing and operating our business. We will take all reasonable steps to address your request.

Make a privacy complaint

We are committed to protecting your privacy. We will treat any accidental or unauthorised disclosure of your personal information seriously and respond to it promptly.

If you lodge a complaint, we will take the following steps:

  • Acknowledge your contact within five working days of receiving your complaint.
  • Ask for more information to help with our investigation if required.
  • Respond to you within 30 days.

If the matter is complex and our investigation is expected to take longer than 30 days, we will let you know and provide you with a new timeframe.

If you are not satisfied with our response to your complaint, you can request a review be undertaken by the ABS Privacy Officer or you may refer your complaint to the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner.

Contact us

If you would like more information on anything covered in this policy please contact:
Email: privacy@abs.gov.au
Phone: National Information Referral Service on 1300 135 070.
Post: Privacy Officer
Policy and Legislation Section
Australian Bureau of Statistics
Locked Bag 10
Belconnen ACT 2617

Please contact us for a hard copy of this policy.

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