Mandatory data breach notification introduced in Australia

May 29, 2013

Mandatory data breach notification will soon be a reality in Australia, with new legislation being introduced into government by attorney-general Mark Dreyfus.

Under the proposed laws (which would come into effect from March 12 next year) require notification of serious data breaches.

The legislation has been welcomed by Australian privacy commissioner Timothy Pilgrim, who has supported the introduction of these laws since they were first put forward in 2008.

"There are real incentives for agencies and organisations to notify of a privacy breach," Mr Pilgrim said in a May 28 statement.

"Apart from being good privacy practice, it can also engender consumer trust, reduce the cost of dealing with a data breach and mitigate against reputational damage."

Mr Pilgrim says he is concerned that without adequate notification of serious data breaches, people directly affected will be unable to take the immediate steps necessary to protect their personal information.

It is hoped that the new laws will resolve this issue and create a safer privacy environment in Australia.

If your organisation has yet to undertake a thorough security audit, now may be the perfect time to begin strengthening your security policies and reducing the risk of a serious data breach.

Using methods such as ethical hacking, a trusted security solutions provider can assess your ICT networks, identify any flaws and help you to resolve these before they can be exploited.

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