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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 13 Hansard (Tuesday, 30 November 2021) . . Page.. 3873 ..


On several files, documents were missing, misplaced or lost, and in some instances had to be obtained again.

Many files contained poorly recorded information—for example, a telephone conversation recorded on a post-it note …

In a few cases, no paper file for an objection was created.

Is this still going on? Is where you live, the value of your house, your business payroll, still floating around on a post-it note in the Revenue Office, with no protection whatsoever? Will Minister Steel’s internal review look at the internal management of private data within ACT government also?

When Minister Steel came in here in question time on Thursday, after knowing full well that this information was going to be discussed, he had not seen the original document. He clearly had not seen the original document. Would you not think the first thing the minister in charge would say is, “Show me the document so that I can fully understand what kind of screw-up we have watched over.” He did not know because on Thursday he came back in here during the adjournment debate to correct the record because he had actually said the wrong thing in question time. The whole argument that a data breach may not have occurred rests on the statements he made in question time on Thursday, which he has said now are categorically incorrect.

I echo what the Leader of the Opposition, Ms Lee, has already said on this. It is a disgrace. The government, via Mr Steel, should not be allowed to review itself. The question here of whether the law has been broken or not needs to be determined by an independent statutory officer who has been specifically appointed for this task—as Minister Steel has admitted, the Australian Information Commissioner, probably in conjunction with the ACT Health Services Commissioner. Offences may have been committed and this government should not be allowed to investigate itself.

For those who are on that list, for those who have suffered trying to have their injuries understood, for those who have tried to have their injuries addressed—injuries they have incurred while serving the people of the ACT via employment on the frontline of this government’s workforce—it is not acceptable that they have been stripped bare in front of the whole community with this data breach and it must be addressed appropriately.

MR RATTENBURY (Kurrajong) (3.43): On behalf of the ACT Greens, I would like to express our support for the robust system of privacy protection that we have in the ACT and for the principles that underpin it. It is important that we respect and protect people’s privacy and people’s personal information from misuse and potential exploitation and indeed from casual exposure, recognising that people value their privacy and that personal information can be misused in many ways. Sometimes these methods of exploitation are not immediately clear, and data can also be interrogated or aggregated and can be used in disturbing ways that were not immediately clear.

The circumstances outlined around this matter are certainly of concern. What we understand so far is that de-identified information relating to historic workers


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