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Source: New Zealand Privacy Commissioner – Blog

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

More than 1000 Trade Me accounts swapped

Trade Me exposed personal information of 1400 users last week after an error briefly swapped customer’s accounts. On Friday last week, Trade Me notified its users that they were briefly logged into the wrong account at about 4pm on 10 February. The mistake was resolved within an hour and Trade Me has notified the Office of the Privacy Commissioner about the incident. Read more here

Community Law Centre breaches employee’s privacy

The Manawatū Community Law Centre has been ordered to pay compensation to a former employee for interfering with her privacy. The Human Rights Review Tribunal has ruled that the centre breached the privacy rights of an employee during an employment dispute and must pay her $6000. Read more here

‘Human error’ leads to personal information being exposed

The TAB has apologised after a number of users had their account information sent to other customers by mistake. The privacy breach occurred when the betting company sent out a daily promotional email to eligible customers who had bet more than $10 on an event the previous day. Read more here

Mental health line defends recording calls without clients’ knowledge

Mental health phone counselling service 1737 has come under fire for failing to let callers know their conversations are recorded. The Mental Health Foundation, the Office of the Privacy Commissioner and a Māori mental health provider have said that customers should be told their calls are recorded. However, the policy does not amount to an automatic breach of the Privacy Act. Read more here

Ex-government worker who hid spy camera to be named

The identity of a man who repeatedly hid a spy camera in an Auckland changing room will be revealed, after a Court of Appeal ruling. The man was in a senior role at a government agency when he installed a camera in the changing room, capturing images of a number of people naked or partially dressed. Read more here

Immunity passports are riddled with privacy risks

As Covid-19 vaccines are administered around the world, ‘immunity passport’ apps are being touted as a way for people to prove their immunisation status so they can travel internationally. New research has found that 82% of the 65 immunity passport apps currently in circulation have inadequate privacy policies and many present complicated ethical problems around the data they collect. Read more here

Image credit: American Crow via John James Audubon’s Birds of America