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Source: New Zealand Privacy Commissioner – Blog

Welcome to our latest round-up of privacy news stories for the week.

Police commit to new rules after unauthorised trial of facial recognition

New Zealand Police have put new rules into effect and signed a charter agreement outlining their responsibilities after it was revealed staff tried out an emerging facial recognition technology without proper authorisation this year. Read more here.

Report shows privacy breach impact

A report by Privacy Commissioner John Edwards has found that the Ministry of Health should have reviewed its decision to provide Covid-19 patient information to emergency services once the alert level moved down in May – and police should not have included the information in police vetting reports. The inquiry followed a privacy breach of Covid-19 patient data by Michelle Boag and MP Hamish Walker. Read more here.

Issues raised as NZ seeks to join Budapest cybercrime convention

Privacy Commissioner John Edwards has raised concerns around the government’s aim to join the international Budapest Convention on Cybercrime. The Budapest Convention provides an international framework to address cybercrime and criminal evidence stored electronically. Read more here.

Privacy complaints made over new West Coast hospital

West Coasters have weighed in with their thoughts on privacy at Greymouth’s Te Nikau Hospital, after the issue came up at last week’s meeting of the District Health Board. Board member Nigel Ogilvie has complained about a lack of privacy in the new hospital building, with passers-by reportedly able to overhear conversations about patients. Read more here.

Staff feel the heat as bosses ramp up remote surveillance

As employers continue to postpone plans for a return to office-based working due to Covid-19, some managers in the UK are deploying increasing levels of surveillance to oversee their staff while they work from home. While this surveillance can be simple, such as checking in on people at the start of the day, there are reports of employers requiring their workers to be visible on camera for the entire day. Read more here.

Stranded Australians’ emails revealed in DFAT privacy breach

About 200 Australians stranded overseas have had their emails accidentally revealed to one another by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT). The department contacted Australians offering them interest-free loans if they had been financially hurt by delays caused by the cap on citizens returning to Australia. Read more here.

Image credit: Indigo bird via John James Audubon’s Birds of America