Part 1 – Overview
seek correction of, personal information held by Defence about you.
are, or are considering becoming:
an Australian Defence Force (ADF) member*
an Australian Public Service (APS) employee† of Defence‡
a Defence locally engaged employee
an outsourced service provider, contractor or consultant to Defence
a Cadet, Officer or Instructor of Cadets in the Australian Navy Cadets, Australian Army
Cadets and the Australian Air Force Cadets
are involved in an Australian Government security clearance process, conducted by the Australian
Government Security Vetting Agency (AGSVA), for example as a clearance subject or a referee
are seeking to export Defence strategic goods and technologies
seek a licence, permit or approval under Defence’s legislative or regulatory framework
are an individual whose personal information has been, or will be, collected or held by Defence.
The Australian Privacy Principles (APPs) contained in Schedule 1 of the TTUUPrivacy Act 1988
Act), regulate how Defence, as an APP entity, collects, holds, uses and discloses personal information.
Generally, Defence collects personal information about individuals within
members of the ADF
Defence APS employees
a Cadet, Officer or Instructor of Cadets in the Australian Navy Cadets, Australian Army Cadets and
the Australian Air Force Cadets
Defence locally engaged employees,
and individuals external
to Defence, including:
dependants, next of kin and emergency contacts of ADF members and Defence APS employees
contractors, consultants and outsourced service providers
candidates seeking entry into the ADF and prospective Defence APS employees
individuals requiring an Australian Government security clearance, or otherwise involved or
associated with a clearance process, undertaken by the Australian Government Security Vetting
people and agents of organisations doing business with Defence
individuals involved in disciplinary proceedings, investigations and/or inquiries
people seeking a licence, permit or approval under Defence’s legislative or regulatory framework
people who make contact with Defence or the Minister for Defence.
Defence collects personal information both directly from the individual concerned, and from other persons,
bodies or entities, including an individual's commander, manager and supervisor, and from specialist service
providers, such as medical practitioners.
The purposes for which Defence collects personal information are outlined below in Part 4.
You are entitled to request access to personal information Defence holds about you or to request correction
of that information. Information about how to do this is provided in Part 7.
to the Defence Privacy Officer.
Detailed information on the APPs can be found on the website of the Office of the Australian Information
Date of issue: TBC
Version number 2
link to page 4
relevant and up-to-date.
Part 2 – Exemptions from the Privacy Act
The following Defence Intelligence Agencies are exempt from the requirements of the Privacy Act and are
Defence Intelligence Organisation
the Australian Geospatial-Intelligence Organisation
the Australian Signals Directorate.
Additionally, the APPs do not apply to operational information collected by Defence and personal information
for special access programs under which foreign governments provide restricted access to technologies.
Part 3 – The kinds of personal information Defence collects and holds
The nature and extent of personal information Defence collects and holds will vary depending on an
individual's particular relationship and interaction with Defence. The kinds of personal information collected
What is personal information?
'Personal information' is defined in subsection 6(1) of the Privacy Act as:
information or an opinion about an identified individual, or an individual who is reasonably identifiable:
a. whether the information or opinion is true or not; and
b. whether the information or opinion is recorded in a material form or not.
Personal information collected by Defence may also be sensitive information. Sensitive information has a
particular meaning under the Privacy Act and includes types of personal information that are of a more
sensitive nature. For example information about your health, political opinions and other listed personal
circumstances. The kinds of sensitive information collected and held by Defence are outlined in Part 2
Information about corporate entities, such as businesses, firms or trusts, or other commercially sensitive
Part 4 – Purposes for which Defence collects personal information
Defence will only collect personal information that is reasonably necessary for, or directly related to, its
functions or activities.
As reflected in the Commonwealth of Australia Administrative Arrangements Order (AAO), which sets out the
legislative and functional responsibility of the Minister for Defence and the Department, the Minister for
Defence is responsible for the defence of Australia, which includes:
international defence relations and defence co-operation
defence scientific research and development
defence procurement and purchasing
defence industry development and co-operation.
In order to satisfy these responsibilities and Defence's responsibilities under the various pieces of legislation
it administers, Defence collects personal information for various purposes depending on the individual's
relationship with Defence. Generally, Defence collects personal information for the following purposes:
the recruitment, enlistment, appointment, command, administration, management and discipline of
the recruitment, employment and management of APS employees in Defence
the provision of health, rehabilitation and veterans' services to Defence personnel**
the management of the welfare of Defence personnel and their dependants
the provision of housing services to Defence members and their families
processing, evaluating and granting security clearances for the Commonwealth
conduct of Defence operations
Defence community engagement, including cadet and youth programs and Defence awards,
sponsorships and scholarships
the conduct of Defence business activities with the individual
the engagement of external service providers
maintaining historical records
compiling diagnostic information
conducting approved human research
identifying potential conflicts of interest
performing security functions associated with information management, which includes website and
legislative and regulatory purposes that require the grant of a licence, permit or approval and the
Use of consultants, contractors and outsourced service providers
Defence uses consultants, contractors and outsourced service providers to undertake certain business
functions. Personal information about you may be collected by or provided to a Defence consultant,
contractor or outsourced service provider when necessary. In situations where personal information about
you is provided to a consultant, contractor or outsourced service provider, Defence practice is to generally
retain effective control of the information. This is done by specifying in the terms of the contract that Defence
is to maintain effective control of any personal information disclosed to and/or used by consultants,
contractors or outsourced service providers. In situations where Defence discloses personal information
about you to consultants, contractors or outsourced service providers and Defence does not retain effective
control of the information, the information will only be used for purposes which are reasonably necessary for,
or directly related to, Defence’s functions or activities.
Consultants, contractors and outsourced service providers who have access to personal information
collected by Defence, or who collect personal information on behalf of Defence, may, if specified in the terms
of their contract, be subject to the same information security policy, training and auditing requirements as
Defence personnel and must also comply with the APPs.
Defence may disclose personal information about you to other APP entities, including:
the Minister for Defence, the Assistant Minister for Defence or the Parliamentary Secretary to the
Minister for Defence
other Defence-related agencies, regulatory bodies, and organisations such as the Department of
Veterans' Affairs, Defence Housing Australia and the Australian War Memorial
other non-Defence related government departments, regulatory bodies, and organisations that have
a function in relation to, or affecting the administration of, ADF members and Defence APS
employees, such as the Australian Taxation Office, Comsuper, Comcare, the Child Support Agency,
the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, SmartSalary and Toll Transitions
in the case of security clearances, the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation and the
Australian Federal Police
Department of Immigration and Border Protection
law enforcement agencies such as the Australian Federal Police, State and Territory policing
federal, state and territory courts and tribunals
other Australian Government departments and agencies for legislative and regulatory purposes
overseas recipients for legislative, regulatory and reporting purposes to meet Australia’s national
security and international obligations.
Defence may disclose personal information about members who are attending the Australian Defence Force
Academy to the University of New South Wales or to other educational institutions.
Defence may disclose personal information about you to a person who is not in Australia or an external
territory (overseas recipient) where it relates to Defence activities or functions. Personal information about
you may be disclosed in the country where the recipient is ordinarily located, or in a country where the
recipient is or, is soon to be, undertaking work related activities. For example, where Australia is undertaking
or participating in military operations or exercises, where it has a Defence establishment (such as RMAF
Base Butterworth, located in Malaysia), or where Defence personnel are located overseas on posting, such
as those performing a Defence Attaché role or an exchange posting, personal information may be disclosed
to 'overseas recipients' in the countries where the activity is being undertaken.
Defence does not disclose personal health information to any other person, including next of kin, unless the
individual about whom the information relates has given express consent, or the disclosure is required or
authorised by or under Australian law, or in circumstance where it is unreasonable to obtain the individual's
consent and the disclosure is necessary to lessen or prevent a serious threat to life, health or safety of an
individual or to public health and safety.
If it is necessary for the acquisition or use of Defence equipment and capability, Defence may also disclose
the personal information of those involved directly, or indirectly, to recipients in the countries where the
recipients are located or the activities or functions are performed.
Part 5 – How Defence collects personal information about you
Defence endeavours to collect personal information about you directly from you where it is reasonably
practicable to do so. Defence collects this information by the use of various forms; from information provided
to commanders, managers and supervisors; and through PMKeyS (Defence's personnel and organisational
data management system).
Due to the scope and nature of Defence activities it is not always possible to collect personal information
from the individual concerned. Defence may collect personal information about you indirectly from a range
of other sources including, but not limited to:
publicly available sources
your access to Defence websites, or information and communications networks and systems
your family members
past and present employers and character referees
other government agencies and organisations.
Defence may also generate personal information about you in the course of undertaking its functions or
Part 6 – How Defence holds personal information about you
Defence stores personal information about you as hardcopy documents or as electronic data within its record
Defence protects personal information about you in accordance with the policy provided for in the Defence
Security Manual in order to take reasonable steps to protect that information against loss, unauthorised
access, use and disclosure, modification and misuse. Defence regularly conducts system audits to ensure
that it adheres to its established protective and information security practices. Protective measures include
password protections, access privileges, secure cabinets/containers and physical access restrictions.
Documents containing personal information also carry the 'Sensitive: Personal' dissemination limitation
marker and may also include a warning notation of ‘Health Information’, where appropriate.
Access to personal information about you is restricted to Defence personnel who have a need to access the
information for purposes which are directly related to or reasonably necessary for their duties in support of
Defence’s functions or activities.
Defence personnel are also required to undertake mandatory annual protective and information security
training, and personnel with access to the Defence personnel management system must demonstrate
knowledge and an understanding of the APPs. In addition to the statutory and policy security measures for
the protection of personal information practised by Defence, reasonable steps must be taken to ensure that
the information is protected.
Defence will only destroy personal information in accordance with statutory requirements, including the Archives Act 1983
and in consultation with relevant authorities authorised to destroy the information. The
Defence Records Management Manual also contains policy on the retention and destruction of documents.
Generally speaking, Defence records must be retained and accessible for as long as they are legally
Part 7 – Access to and correction of personal information
You have a right to request access to, or seek correction of, personal information held by Defence about
you. Defence will attempt to provide you with access to personal information about you in the format you
request. However, on occasion, this may not be possible and in some circumstances, access may only be
granted through a third party, such as a medical practitioner. Defence will consult with you in these
You can request correction of personal information about you from the area within Defence that collected the
information. If you are unsure which area of Defence collected the personal information, you can contact the
Defence Privacy Officer, who will coordinate your application for correction. You should be aware that
Defence's ability to correct or amend personal information may be limited where the information is contained
in a Commonwealth record, as defined in the Archives Act 1983
You can request access to the personal information Defence holds about you in several ways, depending on
Current ADF members
Current ADF members can request access to their personal information through their chain of command.
Former ADF members
Former ADF members can request access to their personal information contained in:
Navy health records
Navy personnel records after 1947
Air Force health and personnel records after 1952
Army health records after 1947
Army personnel records after 1947.
Defence Archive Centre—Fort Queenscliff (DAC-FQ)
GPO Box 1932
MELBOURNE VIC 3001
Defence no longer holds Army health records prior to 1947 or Air Force health records prior to 1952. For
information about how to request these records, contact the Department of Veterans’ Affairs
All ADF World War I and World War II records are held by the National Archives of Australia. For information
about how to request these records contact the National Archives of Australia (www.naa.gov.au).
Current and former Defence APS employees
Current Defence APS employees may request personal information directly through their line manager, from
the area that holds the information, or by contacting the Defence Service Centre – Cooma on 1800 333 362.
Former Defence APS employees may request personal information about them by contacting the Defence
Service Centre – Cooma on 1800 333 362.
ADF recruitment applicants
ADF recruitment applicants should contact the Defence Force Recruiting Centre at which their application
was initially submitted, or call 13 19 01.
Individuals may request personal information about them held by the Australian Government Security Vetting
Agency, which was provided for a security clearance process, by contacting the Director Vetting Governance
All other requests
If you are requesting personal information held about you and you are not, or have not been, an ADF
member or Defence APS employee (for example a person doing business with Defence or a Defence
contractor), you can request personal information about you by contacting the relevant area within Defence
(for example, AGSVA or the Defence Export Control Office), or by contacting the Defence Privacy Officer,
who will assess and coordinate your access to the personal information requested. This can be done by
Further information on the types of records held at the Defence Archives can be obtained from the Defence
Archives web site at: http://www.defence.gov.au/Records/.
Part 8 – Concerns about how personal information about you is handled
If you have questions about how personal information about you will be, or has been, handled by Defence, or
if you believe that Defence has breached the APPs, you should contact the Defence Privacy Officer. Your
concerns may be forwarded to the relevant area within Defence for consideration and action, if appropriate.
Defence is committed to quick and fair resolution of privacy complaints. However, some cases may require
more detailed inquiry. Defence undertakes to keep you informed of the progress of your complaint.
If you are dissatisfied with the way Defence handles your privacy-related complaint, you may contact the
Office of the Australian Information Commissioner. Contact details for the Office of the Australian
Information Commissioner are in Part 9.
Part 9 – Contact details
Defence Privacy OfficerHHHH
PO Box 7927
Office of the Australian Information Commissioner
1300 363 992
GPO Box 5218
Sydney NSW 2001
An ADF member is defined in section 4 of the Defence Act 1903
to include an officer, soldier, sailor, airman or airwoman.
A Defence APS employee means a person employed in the Department of Defence under the Public Service Act 1999.
For the purposes of the Privacy Act, the Department of Defence includes the Australian Defence Force and the Australian
Defence Force Cadet Organisations (Australian Navy Cadets, Australian Army Cadets and the Australian Air Force Cadets)
and are collectively referred to as Defence.
Defence civilian as defined in section 3 of the Defence Force Discipline Act 1982
(DFDA), is a person (other than a Defence
with the authority of an authorised officer as defined in the DFDA, accompanies a part of the ADF that is outside
Australia, or on operations against the enemy; and
has consented, in writing, to subject themselves to ADF discipline while so accompanying that part of the ADF.
Defence personnel includes Australian Public Service employees in the Department of Defence (Defence APS employees),
Defence members, Defence locally engaged employees, Defence civilians, and foreign personnel on exchange to Defence.
Verson 2.0 July 2015
Part 1 – Personal Information collected by Defence
The kinds of personal information
collected by Defence for purposes directly related to or
reasonably necessary for its functions or activities include:
Records relating to attendance and overtime
Leave applications and approvals
Date of birth
Payroll and pay related information
Place of birth
Trade, skill and aptitude test records
Honours and awards
Completed questionnaires and personnel survey forms
Information relating to removals
Information related to travel
Equity and diversity information
Information relating to welfare
Next of kin details
Information relating to allowances
Emergency contact details
Information related to character checks and security
Rank or classification
Professional areas of interest
Applications for compensation
Information relating to rehabilitation and fitness for duty
Driver license details
Information relating to complaints and grievances
Information relating to FOI requests
Information relating to workplace incidents
Training and development
Information relating to social media accounts (e.g.
Dependant details and information
Information relating to the use of Defence websites,
Family support history
User’s top level domain name (e.g. .com, .gov,
Date and time of visit
Pages accessed and documents downloaded
General information relating to an employee's
Information relating to professional references
Information relating to court proceedings
Workplace management history
Evidence provided in relation to inquiries and other
Application for recruitment/employment
Written tasks undertaken during selection process
Information related to seeking legal advice
Notes taken about you during selection process
Personal information contained in selection process
Part 2 – Sensitive Information collected by Defence
The kinds of sensitive information
collected by Defence for purposes directly related to or reasonably
necessary for its functions or activities include:
Racial and ethnic origin
Professional/trade association and memberships
Political affiliations, associations and memberships
Trade union membership
Sexual preferences or practices
Criminal intelligence information