Acting Privacy Commissioner statement relating to Bidura Children's Court documents


The Acting Privacy Commissioner is aware of a recent media report regarding documents found at the Bidura Children’s Court in Glebe.

In NSW, the Privacy and Personal Information Protection Act 1998 (PPIP Act) and the Health Records and Information Privacy Act 2002 (HRIP Act) outline how NSW public sector agencies manage the personal and health information of NSW citizens.

NSW privacy laws exist to protect the personal and health information of individuals and detail how agencies must collect, store, access, use and dispose of that information. NSW agencies have a responsibility and obligation to have appropriate safeguards and measures in place to handle personal and health information and take steps to destroy or de-identify personal information that is no longer required.

The disposal of records is fundamental to privacy and to the protection of personal information. Agencies should have proper checks and robust processes in place to ensure that when office premises or government sites are vacated or permanently closed, that any records held are secured, transported off site, and/or disposed of appropriately and that personal information is protected from misuse, loss or unauthorised access or disclosure. Agencies should undertake these actions consistent with their obligations under NSW privacy law, the State Records Act 1998 and any other applicable legislation.

As government is increasingly engaged with digital records, it is critical that agencies remain aware that physical records continue to exist and that they make sure that they are appropriately managing any physical records alongside its digital records.

The Information and Privacy Commission is engaging with the agency.