If you have a website or app that collects personal data from its users, you need to establish a policy. Although it is common for users not to read through this policy, it is essential to have one for your business.
The definition of personal data varies depending on applicable law. However, personal data is any data that allows businesses to identify a person.
Examples of the types of personal information include:
- Email address
- IP address
- Passport Number
Reason One: It’s a Legal Requirement under Australian Privacy Laws
Reason Two: It builds trust and shows respect for your users’ privacy
Reason Three: It’s a requirement of a third-party service you use
Operating an online business or website often requires the use of third-party tools or services. For example, most websites use analytics tools to track the traffic coming to the website and traffic patterns. Websites and blogs often use advertising to generate revenue and affiliate links. All these services may require that your website, blog, or eCommerce store have a policy.
The footer is the most popular place for websites to post their policy. It is also accessible from any page on your website.
- your business has an annual turnover of more than $3 million
- your business is a health service provider
- your business engages in credit reporting activities
- your business provides services to organisations covered by the Privacy Act
- you collect personal information online
- your business transfers personal information overseas
There are a variety of ways you can collect data from your users.
Some examples are:
- Using cookies on your website;
- Collecting email addresses for monthly newsletters;
- Collecting email addresses to advise when you are running a sale or to publish your next blog post;
- Collecting personal information to send goods to your customers.
A policy should be a comprehensive handbook that leaves no stone unturned. It should encompass the following elements:
- The type of personal information you collect and store
- The purposes for which you collect, retain, use and disclose personal information
- How you collect and securely store personal information
- A promise not to “spam,” sell, or rent a visitor’s email address
- How an individual can get access to personal information and correct the information you hold, including unsubscribing from an email list
- How an individual can complain about a breach of the Australian Privacy Principles and how you’ll handle the complaint
- How you share personal information with others, and if they’re in other countries, the countries it will be shared with.
- Your contact details
The Australian Privacy Principles (APPs):
The Australian Privacy Principles (APPs) strengthen Australia’s data protection by providing 13 fundamental rules for managing personal information. A robust policy must align with these principles, ensuring comprehensive adherence to the legal framework. These principles address matters such as lawful data collection, responsible use, and vigilant data security.
We don’t recommend copying and pasting policies from other websites as they may not fully meet your needs.
- Hiring a law firm: reliable legal advice and the most expensive option available;
- Writing it yourself: The cheapest option, but also the most difficult and time-consuming. If you’re not familiar with the rules and regulations, you could miss important information and put your business at risk.
- place your policy somewhere prominent on your website
- be transparent and disclose anything a user may want to know about their personal information
- don’t copy privacy policies from other websites
- seek legal advice from qualified privacy and data lawyers
How can Prosper Law help?
Prosper Law is Australia’s online law firm. We provide legal advice to businesses and individuals across Australia. Our areas of legal practice include contracts, eCommerce, publishing, legal counsel and employment law.
If you need to talk to an eCommerce Lawyer, get in touch today.
Micaela Diaz | Solicitor
PROSPER LAW – Australia’s Online Law Firm
M: 1300 003 077
A: Suite No. 99, Level 18, 324 Queen Street, Brisbane, Queensland Australia 4000