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Australia: OAIC releases statement on privacy safeguards for the COVIDSafe app

The Office of the Australian Information Commissioner ('OAIC') issued, on 18 November 2020, a statement on the assessment program of privacy safeguards of the COVIDSafe contact tracing app by the Australian Government, which is due to be released by the end of the year in the form of a report. In particular, the Privacy Commissioner of the OAIC, Angelene Falk, noted that the assessment of the app takes into consideration compliance and risk throughout the information lifecycle on the app. Furthermore, the OAIC clarified the report will examine the following: 

  • the access controls applied to the national app's data store by the Data Store Administrator ('the DSA');
  • the access controls applied to the use of app's data by the state or territory health authorities;
  • the functionality of the app against specified privacy protections set out under the app's privacy policy and collection notices, and against the requirements of the latest amendments to the Privacy Act 1988 (No. 119, 1988) (as amended) ('the Act') introduced by the bill on COVIDSafe;
  • compliance of the Data Store Administrator with data handling and deletion requirements under the amendments of the Act; and
  • the compliance of the DSA with the deletion and notification requirements in the amendments which relate to the end of the pandemic.

You can read the statement here