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February 4 2016

NSW gets new cross-border data sharing rules

NSW will finally get new privacy laws that govern how and when state-held information can be shared outside its boundaries, thanks to an amendment to the Privacy Act passed by parliament.
The legislation is aimed at addressing deficiencies in the Privacy and Personal Information Protection Act 1998 which meant personal information on NSW citizens was no longer protected once it moved outside state borders.
The state's privacy legislation, which controls the use and disclosure of personal data held by public sector organisations, came into effect 17 years ago. Guidelines for data sharing interstate and with Commonwealth were expected to follow soon after but never materialised.
The new law is designed to make it clear that NSW entities are still responsible for privacy even outside state borders when they are sharing data with other governments or third-party vendors like cloud hosting providers. The bill passed unopposed.