The Government plans to overhaul 20-year-old privacy laws following ”huge changes to technology”.
Justice Minister Judith Collins today announced the Government would repeal and re-enact the Privacy Act 1993 following a Law Commission report released last year, which made more than 100 recommendations.
“Our current privacy law has been in place for almost 20 years and predates the creation of the internet,” Collins said.
“Huge changes to technology and information flows have occurred during that time and they have overtaken our privacy laws.”
Collins said people were expecting more information to be available quickly and were more likely to share “private information”.
“The foundations of the Act are sound, but it needs to be updated to reflect our changing attitudes and the way people, business and government use information in the 21st century.”
The Justice Ministry was reviewing the Law Commission’s recommendations and would report back to the Government in September.
Further announcements about specific policy proposals would be made later this year, Collins said.
It is good that the act will be updated, as it is out of date. However I’d encourage people to take a keen interest in the law changes once they are known. Privacy is very important to people, but so is freedom of information and speech and sometimes the two may conflict. Getting that balance right is crucial.