Data Protection Act 2011

The Data Protection Bill 2011 was introduced in the House of Representatives in January 2011.

The Bill “seeks to protect the privacy of personal and private information of individuals which is entered into electronic format” and “to ensure that protection is afforded to an individual’s right to privacy and the right to maintain sensitive personal information as private and personal.”

The Bill also establishes an Office of the Information Commissioner to monitor the administration of the Act to ensure its purposes are achieved.

Several concerns were raised by the Opposition and the Bill went into committee stage in the House of Representatives with several changes made.

In the Senate, more concerns were raised by Independent and Opposition Senators and the Bill went into the Committee Stage in the Senate with amendments made.

The House of Representatives approved the Senate Amendments and the Bill was Assented on June 22 2011. It was proclaimed on January 6 2012 given the need for Part I and sections 7 to 18, 22, 23, 25(1), 26 and 28 of Part II of the Data Protection Act 2011 to come into operation.