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Source: New Zealand Privacy Commissioner – Blog

Welcome to our round-up of privacy stories in the news for January.

How to Write: An apology letter

Done right, an apology is a really important way to reset a relationship, says NZ Privacy Commissioner John Edwards. The Office of the Privacy Commissioner sees a lot of apologies, as a part of settling disagreements, and have learnt a bit about what works and what doesn’t. Listen to John Edwards’ tips for apologising on RNZ here.

Second public sector organisation hit by cyber-attack

Another Government organisation is grappling with a cyber-attack, following a digital attack on the Reserve Bank last month. The Health Research Council, which is responsible for managing around $120 million in funding annually, says it is addressing “an incident affecting the organisation’s IT environment.” Read more here.

Parents warned to check privacy settings before posting photos of children
Photos posted online of a child’s first day at school can reveal a lot of personal information. The Australian Federal Police warns that images of children in school uniform, showing their name or location, can be used by offenders to groom parents and children, and the back-to-school period is a good time to implement safe online practices. Read more here.

First AML awarded Privacy Trust Mark

The Privacy Commissioner has awarded First AML a Privacy Trust Mark for its anti-money laundering platform. The Privacy Trust Mark provides assurance for customers that a specific product protects and respects their personal information. First AML joins TICC, Rippl, Air New Zealand, RealMe, and Trade Me as organisations that have earned the Privacy Trust Mark. Read more here.

Grindr fined £8.6m in Norway oversharing personal information

Dating app Grindr has been fined 100m Norwegian krone (£8.6m) by the Norwegian Data Protection Authority after an investigation revealed the app was sharing deeply personal information with advertisers. The fine is 10% of the company’s global annual revenue and is particularly high because of the sensitive nature of the information shared. Read more here.

WhatsApp’s new privacy rules sparking alarm

Facebook-owned WhatsApp has begun alerting its 2 billion users to an update of its privacy policy, which will allow the app to share data it collects about you with the broader Facebook network. The new terms have caused an outcry among technology experts, privacy advocates, billionaire entrepreneurs and government organisations. Read more here.

What we learned from Apple’s new privacy labels

Last year, Apple introduced a new requirement for all software developers that publish apps through its App Store. Apps must now include privacy labels, which list the types of data being collected in an easily scannable format. But while the labels were often illuminating, they sometimes created more confusion. Read more here.

Image credit: Carolina Parrot via John James Audubon’s Birds of America