Risk Management: Data Protection and Privacy Compliance – April 2024 Update

The OAIC’s latest Notifiable Data Breaches Report (Jul – Dec 2023) reveals the risk for organisations that outsource the handling of personal information to third party service providers and contractors – as well as risks of retaining personal information for longer than needed. In this Update we review the OAIC’s latest findings and provide guidance on steps an organisation can take to minimise risk and harm and to protect confidential information/data.

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The Risk of Data Retention – Why Your Organisation Needs a Data Retention and Destruction Policy

Under Australian Privacy Law, organisations that hold Personal Information must take reasonable steps to destroy or de-identify personal information that the entity no longer needs – or face risks of incurring high penalties and reputational damage. An effective Data Retention and Destruction Policy provides an entity with a clear roadmap to ensure compliance with its obligations at law.

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Australian Consumer Guarantees and Warranties: Is Your Business Compliant? – Update January 2024

The consumer guarantees provided under the Australian Consumer Law cannot be excluded, modified or restricted and are in addition to any manufacturer’s or supplier’s warranty – with high penalties applying for breach. Fitbit was recently ordered to pay penalties of $11million for making misleading statements about consumer guarantee rights.
Businesses can take steps to minimise the risk of contravention of the Australian Consumer Law relating to consumer guarantees.

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Strategies for Protecting and Maximizing Value of Intellectual Property

Maintaining and protecting a business’s trade marks, brand names, designs, patents and copyright material are critical for maximizing the value of the intellectual property and resulting revenue. This update provides an overview of some of the strategies that businesses can consider implementing for the maintenance and protection of their intellectual property rights in the on-line digital market environment and generally.

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Damages for Online Defamation – the “Serious Harm” Element

The additional requirement to establish “serious harm” in a defamation action was part of the reforms to Australian defamation law which came into effect on 1 July 2021. They were enacted to encourage defamation claims not involving “serious harm” to be resolved without court action. This update provides a review of recent Australian defamation cases where the courts have considered whether the “serious harm” requirement has been established and provides useful guidance on factors that the court will consider in determining “serious harm”.

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Advertising of Health Services – New Advertising Guidelines – Is your advertising compliant?

The new Medical Board/AHPRA “Guidelines For Registered Medical Practitioners who Advertise Cosmetic Surgery” came into effect on 1 July 2023. Health practitioners, individuals, businesses, and companies involved in advertising of health services will be subjected to greater scrutiny by the regulators who will be focusing on advertising and social media used to promote cosmetic surgery.

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