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The Intelligence and Security Act 2017 amended the Privacy Act, and these amendments have now come into force. The amendments, and related amendments to three privacy codes of practice, take effect today, 28 September 2017.

Amendment to section 57 of the Privacy Act

The NZSIS and the GCSB were previously exempted from most of the information privacy principles by section 57 of the Privacy Act. The effect was that the NZSIS and the GCSB were only subject to privacy principles 6, 7 and 12. Section 57 has now been amended.

As a result of that amendment, the NZSIS and the GCSB are now subject to principles 1, 4(a), 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, and 12.

Principles 2, 3 and 4(b) do not apply to the collection of personal information by the NZSIS and the GCSB.

New exceptions in principles 10 and 11

Privacy principles 10 and 11 each now contain a new exception. The exception added to principle 10 allows the NZSIS and GCSB to use personal information obtained for one purpose for a different purpose - where necessary for the performance of their respective functions.

The NZSIS and GCSB can also disclose personal information, where necessary to enable the performance of any of their functions, under a new exception added to principle 11.

Disclosing personal information to the NZSIS or the GCSB is now subject to the Privacy Act. Previously, disclosures to the NZSIS and GCSB were exempted. The new exception added to principle 11 allows for disclosures of personal information to the NZSIS or the GCSB where necessary for the performance of their respective functions. Existing exceptions in principle 11 can also be used to justify disclosures to the NZSIS and the GCSB where the necessary criteria are met.

Amendments to Codes of Practice

Consequential amendments to the health, telecommunications, and credit reporting codes of practice have been issued following a consultation process. These amendments allow for non-compelled disclosures of health information, telecommunications information and credit information to the NZSIS or the GCSB where necessary for the performance of their respective functions, reflecting the amendment made to principle 11.

Read the FAQ sheet here.

For more information, contact Charles Mabbett 021 509 735.