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Data & Privacy

Data is a crucial part of every business environment. It is imperative that all organisations have systems and procedures in place to manage local and international legal requirements as well as maintaining a social licence to operate

Data & Privacy

We have seen some key changes in the privacy space recently: the Australian Federal Government has introduced new mandatory breach notification laws and the European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) will have extraterritorial operation and potentially affect Australian businesses.


The local mandatory data breach rules provide a reason for many Australian businesses to reconsider the way they collect, process, store, and share secure personal information. Even if one business is not concerned about its data practices, its business partners are likely to be increasingly persistent about transparency of legal compliance.

Our practice covers data in many forms, including business information, big datasets and personal and sensitive information. While we spend significant time advising on the Privacy Act and the Spam Act, the issues around data often crossover into competition law and complex commercialisation arrangements. We also understand managing data and privacy risk involves a range of stakeholders within an organisation and we often work not only with general counsel but internal executive teams including chief data officers, chief security officers, chief risk officers and the regulatory and communications executives.

We can assist with your privacy and data protection concerns by:

  • reviewing current policies and underlying practices
  • training management and frontline staff
  • preparing and implementing policies, codes of conduct, and internal procedures
  • providing advice in crisis situations – such as breaches
  • preparing compliance plans and privacy impact assessment.

For our latest analysis on the expected changes to Australia’s privacy regulatory landscape over 2020/21, watch our webinar co-hosted with OneTrust DataGuidance here.  


Information Governance Frameworks

We work with senior managers and boards to develop and implement information governance frameworks. This encompasses risk management strategies and often overlaps with other areas of risk and compliance, including anti-corruption. Our primary concern is Privacy Act compliance as well as relevant international requirements so that group policies can align with all relevant jurisdictions. 

Data Breach planning, investigation and response

We can assist you to develop breach response plans, rehearse and scenario plan, prepare in advance your response and investigation planning methodology and team. We also assist in liaising with the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner.

Data Security

Holding Redlich has experience advising international organisations about the collection and use of various elements of personal information in Australia including the ability to use personal information to create derivative statistical and risk assessment products for use in and out of Australia. We also have experience drafting privacy, right to information and data security provisions for commercial contracts for local, State and Federal government agencies, Government owned corporations and statutory authorities.

Regulator investigations and enquiries

  • acting for both corporations and individuals in regulatory investigations and prosecutions
  • assisting clients in managing regulators’ monitoring and enforcement visits
  • advising on and creating compliance and risk management policies and programs tailored to the particular risks faced by different corporations and individuals
  • advising companies, directors and officers involved in external investigations and prosecutions brought by Commonwealth and state agencies.

Open Data frameworks and information access (FOI)

Holding Redlich acts on behalf of applicants and respondents to Freedom of Information requests. We regularly advise on the validity (or otherwise) of the scope of a request, and assist clients in refusing requests for documents that are either too voluminous or seek only documents that are exempt under the FOI Act. We also assist in the processing of FOI requests, including the review of documentation and assessment for exemption. Once a decision is made, we assist the decision-maker to communicate the basis of their decision. We have also successfully defended appeals and complaints made to the FOI Commissioner in respect of those decisions. 


Recent Posts

25 January 2021 - Knowledge

Australia’s proposed new surveillance legislation: Combatting the dark web

#Data & Privacy

In December 2020, the Australian Government introduced a new surveillance bill to provide the Australian Federal Police and the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission with new powers to obtain warrants to tackle crime on the dark web. We look at the scope of those proposed new warrants.

22 January 2021 - Knowledge

Manage your collaboration with care, not complacency

#Data & Privacy

The recent OAIC determination on Flight Centre’s data breach is a stark reminder on how collaboration events can quickly nosedive after a customer data leak.

18 January 2021 - Knowledge

NSW Government Bulletin – summer edition

#Government, #Construction & Infrastructure, #Data & Privacy, #Planning, Environment & Sustainability

In this special edition of our fortnightly publication, we look at the crisis that affected government last year and how the circumstances call for change in 2021.

25 November 2020 - Knowledge

IBAC warns that misuse of personal information could amount to corrupt conduct

#Data & Privacy, #Local Government, #Corporate & Commercial Law

Local governments collect and manage a considerable range of personal information when delivering services which are so integral in our daily lives.

11 November 2020 - Knowledge

Is Australia’s Privacy Act fit for purpose? Time to have your say

#Data & Privacy

In 2019, the Digital Platforms Inquiry foreshadowed a review of the Privacy Act to strengthen it for the modern era. That review has now been released for public consultation.

14 October 2020 - Knowledge

NSW Government Bulletin

#Government, #Data & Privacy

How is trust in NSW government? Better than you may expect according to the results from the Information and Privacy Commission’s latest community attitudes survey on data sharing, information access and agency assistance.

29 September 2020 - Knowledge

Personal data fears: Companies lose consumer trust

#Data & Privacy

Australians have lost trust in companies’ handling of personal data, according to a recent Office of the Australian Information Commissioner survey.

15 September 2020 - Knowledge

NSW Government Bulletin

#Government, #Data & Privacy

Service NSW supports small business in their COVID-19 safety plans by upgrading its app to manage visitor registrations.

31 August 2020 - Knowledge

COVID-19 identified who was essential but cyber security will determine who is critical

#Data & Privacy

The Department of Home Affairs has issued a consultation paper on critical infrastructure and systems of national significance to revisit the critical sectors in the post-pandemic world, and how to protect them.

12 August 2020 - Knowledge

‘Your explicit consent’ – what it means and why the ACCC is taking Google to court (again)

#Technology, Media & Telecommunications, #Competition & Consumer Law, #Data & Privacy

We discuss why the ACCC thinks Google misled consumers to agree to a 2016 privacy policy change that allows a more extensive collection of personal information, and what implications this might have for all businesses.

07 July 2020 - Knowledge

The importance of a crisis-proof strategy

#Data & Privacy

The old saying “never waste a good crisis” has never been as relevant as it is now. Many organisations are facing business issues in circumstances they never expected and are needing to respond in agile ways.

07 July 2020 - Knowledge

The importance of compliance with the Spam Act

#Data & Privacy

In light of recent action taken against Woolworths and Optus for breaches of the Spam Act, businesses should ensure they have processes and procedures in place to comply with this legislation.