Privacy

© Commonwealth of Australia 2011

All personal information collected by the Department of Employment is protected by the Privacy Act 1988. Information on the Commonwealth Privacy Act 1988 can be found on the Federal Privacy Commissioner’s web site.

The department's Privacy Policy

The Australian Government Department of Employment (the department) is committed to protecting the privacy of personal information. This Privacy Policy embodies this commitment and applies to personal information collected by the department and its contractors and agents (collectively, the department).

The department adheres to the requirements of the Information Privacy Principles contained within the Privacy Act 1988 and the Guidelines for Federal and ACT Government World Wide Websites, issued by the Federal Privacy Commissioner.

Information we collect and how we use it

The department helps the Australian Government achieve its overall objective of quality educational, employment and training outcomes for all Australians through:

  • efficient national programme management
  • effective working relationships with state and territory governments, education departments, non-government education, science and training authorities, Indigenous education service providers, industry, community groups and other stakeholders
  • auditing, research and analysis in order to maintain, protect and improve our services, and
  • policy advice and other support to the Minister.

Generally, the department collects personal information in order to properly and efficiently carry out its functions, and only uses personal information for the purposes for which it was given to the department and for directly related purposes (unless otherwise required by or authorised under law).

In addition to this general Privacy Policy, where more detailed information is needed to explain our privacy practices, we publish separate privacy notices to describe how we will handle personal information that we collect. For example, where we ask you to provide personal information in relation to a particular programme administered by the department, we will provide you with a privacy notice which details our practices in relation to that particular programme.

Communication - emails and Electronic Forms

The department’s servers may record your email address if you send us a message online. Your email address will not be added to a mailing list, unless you have provided it to us in order to subscribe to one of our subscription services, such as the department’s Site Change Subscription Service.

Where you choose to send us a completed electronic form that includes your personal details, we collect personally identifiable information, such as name, address and email address.

The information collected by email or electronic forms will be used only for the purpose for which you provided it, and we will not disclose it unless one of the circumstances described below under the heading “Information Sharing” has been satisfied. For those who do not wish to use the internet, the department provides alternative ways of providing information. For example, forms may be printed and lodged by post.

Log information (Browsing)

When you use the department’s online services, our servers automatically record information that your browser sends whenever you visit a website. These server logs may include information such as your server address, your top level domain name (for example, .com, .gov, .au, .uk, etc), the date and time of visit to the site, the pages accessed and documents viewed, the previous sites visited, and the browser type, browser language, and one or more cookies that may uniquely identify your browser.

Cookies

A cookie is a small file containing a string of characters to your computer that uniquely identifies your browser. It is information that your web browser sends back to our web site server whenever you visit it again. We use cookies to ‘remember’ your browser between page visits. In this situation, the cookie identifies your browser, not you personally. No personal information is stored within the department’s cookies.

Google Analytics

The department uses Google Analytics to collect information about visitors to its website. Google Analytics uses first-party cookies and JavaScript code to help analyse how users use the site. It anonymously tracks how our visitors interact with this website, including how they have accessed the site (for example from a search engine, a link, an advertisement etc) and what they did on the site. The information generated by the cookie about your use of the website (including your IP address) will be transmitted to and stored by Google on servers in the United States. Google will use this information for the purposes of compiling reports on website activity and providing other services relating to website activity and internet usage. You may refuse the use of cookies by selecting the appropriate settings on your browser.

Access and alteration of records containing personal information

When you provide personal information in relation to the department’s services, we will allow you access to your personal information and we will correct your personal information if it is inaccurate (subject to restrictions on such access/alteration of records under the applicable provisions of any law of the Commonwealth).

The Freedom of Information Act 1982 also provides you with an opportunity to request access to documents in the possession of the department. For more information go to the Freedom of Information page.

Information sharing

We only disclose personal information to third parties in the following circumstances:

  • Where you are reasonably likely to have been aware, or made aware by way of a privacy notice, that your personal information is usually passed to the relevant parties
  • Where you have consented
  • Where we believe on reasonable grounds that the disclosure is necessary to prevent or lessen a serious and imminent threat to your life or health or that of another person
  • Where the disclosure is required or authorised by or under law, or
  • Where the disclosure is reasonably necessary for the enforcement of the criminal law or of a law imposing a pecuniary penalty, or for the protection of the public revenue.

Information security

We take all reasonable steps:

  • to protect the personal information that we hold against loss, against unauthorised access, use, modification or disclosure and against other misuse, and
  • to ensure that, where we have given personal information to a contractor (that carries out service for the department), that contractor complies with the Information Privacy Principles in the Privacy Act.

Data integrity

We take reasonable steps to make sure that the personal information we collect and store is accurate, relevant, up to date, complete and not misleading.

Enforcement

The department regularly reviews its compliance with this Policy. If you have any questions/complaints about privacy, confidentiality or access to your personal information, please contact the department’s Privacy Contact Officer by writing to:

  • Privacy Contact Officer – Loc C148CW2 Department of Employment GPO Box 9880 Canberra ACT 2601.

Changes to this policy

Please note that this Privacy Policy may change from time to time.

Further Information

The department is required to submit a Personal Information Digest (PID) to the Privacy Commissioner each year, which outlines, amongst other things, the sorts of records of personal information that the department holds. The department’s PIDs are available from the Privacy Commissioner’s website.

Last modified on Tuesday 15 October 2013 [33|215]