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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 09 Hansard (Thursday, 16 September 2021) . . Page.. 2658 ..


allow access to the Check In CBR data for “another purpose related to undertaking contact tracing”. We believe that this would require officials to make judgement calls about whether or not specific activity is related to undertaking contact tracing, which could lead to varying interpretations and potentially inappropriate access. Our amendment would require that any related purposes be specifically listed in regulation, thereby ensuring clarity and certainty about any use of Check In CBR data for purposes that were not directly related to contact tracing.

Our second amendment would replace the proposed subsection 2E(4), which currently provides a direction that authorised persons must not use Check In CBR data for a purpose other than a “permitted purpose”, with an offence provision equivalent to that applying to all other members of the community. The real privacy risk is that the cache of data collected by the Check In CBR app will be misused in or by a government, where the data is actually aggregated and stored, not by businesses trying to run a busy coffee shop or supermarket.

Our amendment would make it an offence for an authorised person—that is, a contact tracer who already has access to the data—recklessly or intentionally accessing or using the data for a purpose that is not a permitted purpose. Importantly, this amendment will not make inadvertent or accidental access or misuse of data by an authorised person an offence—only reckless or intentional access and misuse. The amendment deals with the risk that authorised persons might use their access to data to look up neighbours’ movements or worse.

Indicating that it will not support this amendment, the government has said that such improper conduct by authorised persons would be dealt with via the ACT public service values and signature behaviours—that is, the code of conduct. The Canberra Liberals, however, are aware that the ACT government has, rightly, engaged people from other jurisdictions, such as Western Australia and Tasmania, to assist with contact tracing. How these people would be dealt with via the ACT code of conduct if they misuse data is totally unclear.

Our third amendment would insert a new section 2H into the bill and clarify that the protections in the bill prevail over all other territory legislation. The purpose of this amendment is to make it crystal clear that other government agencies and officials who might have specific information gathering powers, such as the AFP or the ACT Revenue Commissioner, cannot access any information collected by the Check In CBR app.

Proposed section 2F of the bill would prevent any data collected from being admitted as evidence in court. However, the protection would not prevent the data from being accessed and used by the police for criminal intelligence purposes, such as identifying personal movements or associations.

When the government installed point-to-point speed cameras on Hindmarsh Drive, we on this side of the chamber were assured that the information collected would not be used for any other purpose. About six months later, we FOI-ed the use of the data and discovered that police had accessed the data on multiple occasions to identify personal movements. Can the government absolutely assure us that this will never happen with


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