NZ agencies reported 168 privacy breaches in FY18

By Dylan Bushell-Embling
Tuesday, 27 November, 2018

NZ agencies reported 168 privacy breaches in FY18

New Zealand agencies reported 168 breaches to the security of personal information to the Office of the Privacy Commissioner during the year ending in June, according to the commissioner's annual report.

The number of disclosed breaches was an increase from the 132 incidents reported during the prior financial year.

New Zealand does not yet have a mandatory data breach notification scheme, so all breach notifications were voluntarily submitted.

A Bill currently before the nation's parliament would introduce a scheme that has been developed with input from Australia's Office of the Information Commissioner, based on the experience introducing Australia's own Notifiable Data Breach scheme.

The voluntary notifications were submitted by both public and private sector agencies. The report found that human error continues to be the leading cause of breaches of the integrity of private data. Common types of breaches include sending electronic or physical information to the wrong recipient.

Meanwhile, during the year the office closed 706 investigation files, called out one agency for non-compliance with the Privacy Act and advised on 107 policy proposals that involved personal information.

The agency also introduced a call centre service, live chat and other changes to improve its enquiries function after receiving well more than the expected quota of enquiries during the year.

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