Privacy training in the Defence Department

Verity Pane made this Freedom of Information request to Department of Defence

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The request was successful.

Dear Department of Defence,

I request access administratively in the first instance, but under FOI (and s 17 if necessary), for information and/or documents relating to privacy awareness and/or privacy training conducted by Defence.

In a related FOI, Defence mentioned "Complainants and commander/managers can also obtain information and advice from the Defence Privacy Intranet site which includes a Privacy Toolbox and the Privacy Knowledge Site - which also provides the information component of the Australian Privacy Principles: eAssessment course."

Would it be possible to be provided with some of this information, to get some idea of what knowledge and skill training Defence makes available on Privacy Act responsibilities? It would be useful in discussing Defence's privacy KSA.

And how many people have completed the Australian Privacy Principles eAssessment course, and is it compulsory training?

I am also interested in whether your central privacy officers (who manage privacy complaints on behalf of Defence) receive any special training or are required to do any courses to ensure they have the necessary knowledge, skills, and abilities to administer Privacy Act complaints. If you can provide anything on that, that would be useful.

To give an understanding, I am looking across the APS (but have picked Defence as a case study, given it's the largest agency) on its Privacy Act management and capabilities (having collected information from the Australian Information Commissioner side, now looking at the other side), given we are soon approaching 20 years of the Privacy Act. It is therefore timely to seek to add to the very limited body of knowledge of on this aspect of Australian public sector management.

If you think anything else will be of assistance, happy for you to provide (and the benefit of RtK is that anyone who is interested can take a look too).

Yours faithfully,

Verity Pane

FOI, Department of Defence


Good afternoon

Thank you for your email. Your email has been forwarded for consideration/action.

Kind regards

FOI Operations
[email address]
(02) 6266 2200

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Hanna, Nicole MS, Department of Defence

21 Attachments


Good morning Ms Pane

Thank you for your email. Defence has provided the following response in relation to your questions.

For the period 01 Jan 2015 - 30 Jun 2017, 28,613 Defence personnel completed the Australian Privacy Principles eAssessment course.

The eAssessment is compulsory for employees within the Defence People Group (HR), personnel requiring access to our Personnel Management System (PMKeyS) and those working in other areas which regularly deal with personal information such as Defence Archives and Freedom of Information. Many local work areas have also mandated the completion of this assessment. The completion of the assessment (either first time or as a refresher) is used as part of a response to a breach or potential breach.

Privacy complaints are managed by a small team of HR case officers who also manage internal APS employee grievances and complaints with Australian Human Rights Commission, Ombudsman and Merit Protection Commission. They receive some additional training in Privacy (through Australian Government Solicitor) and Administrative decision making. Legal advice is sought internally or externally if required.

Please find attached some additional information which may assist you with your inquiry. This information has been released administratively.

Kind regards

Nicole Hanna
FOI Case Officer
Information Management and Access
Governance and Reform Division
Department of Defence | CP1-6-003| PO Box 7910 | Canberra BC ACT 2610 | (02) 6266 3948| Email [email address]

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Dear Nicole,

Thank you, this is informative.

Yours sincerely,

Verity Pane

Locutus Sum left an annotation ()

I agree with the applicant; the response from the agency was very informative. Also, it was prompt, and managed administratively without the machinery of the Act. It is very nice to see so much a comprehensive reply with the supporting documents. Congratulations to Deptartment of Defence.