The ACC reports

August 23rd, 2012 at 4:04 pm by David Farrar

Two reports out today on . One from the Auditor-General and one by the Privacy Commissioner. Both individually and jointly they are fairly damning. Some extracts from the AG:

When Ms Pullar met Mr McCliskie in September 2011, the issues that she raised with him were arguably general issues about ACC, rather than (or not only) specific to her claim. However, the matters that ACC investigated because of Ms Pullar’s approach to Mr McCliskie focused on its handling of her claim.

In our view, the matters that Mr McCliskie recorded in his email of 14 September (illegal access to files, incompetent ACC specialists, fraudulent activities by ACC staff) are areas of risk with which a Board should be concerned. That was Mr McCliskie’s original reaction.

We looked for some reporting back to the Board, or to Mr Judge and Mr McCliskie, on the issues raised by Ms Pullar. This included issues raised at her meeting with Mr McCliskie, in her emails to Mr McCliskie of 14 and 15 October, and in the list of 45 issues presented at the 1 December meeting. We did not find any evidence of this.

We have some observations about why ACC might have failed to appreciate the risks arising from the privacy breach and the allegations of systemic wrongdoing.

In this environment of change and transition, Ms Pullar’s allegations, and the privacy breach in particular, were not recognised for the risks they presented. We have no view as to whether Ms Pullar’s wider allegations are in any way justified. We have not inquired into
those matters. However, we consider that accusations of systemic illegality and fraud are issues that any public sector organisation should take seriously.

Both Directors acted unwisely in my opinion, and as the AG noted they failed to seperate out the operational issues raised by Pullar (which were for management) and the more general allegations of wrong-doing, such as privacy breaches.

I can’t do quotes from the Privacy Commissioner report as some idiot has set the pdf, so you can not copy and paste text. Grrr, that pisses me off. Why would you set a public document to not allow copying extracts. Don’t you want the extracts to be accurate rather than retyped?

The overall assessment though was ACC had no strategies in place to properly manage data and privacy, which led to a history of privacy breaches and complaints.

I would note that ACC Minister Judith Collins has already seen a significant personnel change at board level, and instructed ACC to focus on restoring confidence in how it deals with data and privacy.

The response from Judith Collins is above. I think the reports vindicate the decisions she has taken to date.

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25 Responses to “The ACC reports”

  1. OTGO (523 comments) says:

    That taser over her right shoulder looks ominous. The directors of ACC should take note.

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  2. Nookin (3,178 comments) says:

    PDF unlocker — havent tried it so be careful
    http://www.ensode.net/pdf-crack.jsf

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  3. Jinky (181 comments) says:

    Culture at ACC appears to have changed for the worse when the pressure was applied to reduce the number of long-term claimants. less people focussed and more targetted at saving money. Clearly Pullar was seen as “difficult” and her concerns were not taken seriously.

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  4. tvb (4,247 comments) says:

    Judith Collins was given a hospital pass over this. She was let down by the Board and a couPle of political operatives.

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  5. insider (1,030 comments) says:

    The OAG report seems a bit of a non event, apart from showing McCliskie to have been an idiot.

    I loved the line from Judge: “Because I know Mr McCliskie to be someone who is very concerned about ACC doing the right thing (and, I noted from his email, he knew Ms Pullar from his days at ENZA) I was not completely taken aback by the fact that he had met with her.” which reads to me as ” the guy’s a bleeding heart wet fish so I’m not surprised he couldn’t keep to the rules and leave well alone.”

    The main worry is the implication that if a board member gets regaled with unsubstantiated tales of corruption and malfeasance they have to take it seriously, no matter how far fetched, and follow up with some sort of investigation/reporting. In these PC times, judgement seems to be an unwanted skill.

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  6. perfectvampire (22 comments) says:

    Copy & paste works fine on a Mac, DPF. Maybe time for an upgrade? :P

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  7. Katrine (1 comment) says:

    Thanks for the info about pdf problems, David – will see if we can get a different version of report.

    [DPF: Thanks - that would be great]

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  8. orewa1 (428 comments) says:

    The privacy issue is worrying enough, but the tragic underlying problem is that the social contract on which the ACC was founded – that citizens forego their right to sue in return for state cover – has been broken by successive Ministers intent on saving money at all costs.

    It is an illustration of this government’s preoccupation with balancing the government’s books, while ignoring what that means for the books of the country overall and individual citizens. I’m not decrying the need for restraint, but this should not be at the cost of the government paying its legitimate bills.

    Government is elected for the good of the people and the country, not just for the public purse.

    ACC claimants are not beneficiaries. They are citizens who government has corralled into a compulsory insurance scheme, and who it has since belittled by positioning them as bludgers.

    Anyone who defaults on legitimate debts is despicable. Governments, no less so. National needs to go back to first principles on this.

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  9. Steve (North Shore) (4,522 comments) says:

    Whats a PDF unlocker and why would you use one?
    My Adobe Reader v 10.1 works fine. Am I missing something here?

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  10. Nookin (3,178 comments) says:

    Steve
    Sometimes PDFs are locked and cannot print. I have used a pdf unlocker to print some docs previously. I dont know how legit they are but assume it;s ok

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  11. gump (1,549 comments) says:

    The reason that protected PDFs can be copy/pasted on Mac systems is because the OS X preview app doesn’t respect extended PDF attributes. There are numerous other PDF features that aren’t supported by the preview app – use google for more detailed info. .

    If you want to open a locked PDF on a PC, there are stacks of apps that will do it.

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  12. Nostalgia-NZ (5,039 comments) says:

    So are we supposed to believe that while the privacy of ACC claimants was breached it was because a government department had no proper strategies in place, that’s all?

    This shouldn’t be connected to Bennett releasing details of a beneficiary in order to humiliate the woman, in a situation where Paula B thought, and has since confirmed, that it is her right to breach privacy.

    If the Ministers are breaching the law, openly, and without contradiction, then surely the pattern is set for the departments they administer.

    As this government proceeds, there are footprints left of women ministers doing the dirty work of a weak government ‘concentrating’ on diversions. News is an improving economy – not amendments to marriage laws, or that departments – fully funded and operated by the government – don’t have strategies in place to comply with the law.

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  13. Johnboy (15,564 comments) says:

    If I ever have to go on ACC I want it to be for the bad back I got from my foursome with Judith, Anne and Paula! :)

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  14. Nostalgia-NZ (5,039 comments) says:

    You’re bad back would come right Johnboy but your reamed out butt would never recover.

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  15. Yvette (2,744 comments) says:

    For a back injury claim, Johnboy, you need to show a suitable actual physical impact.
    Frolicking with a bunch of nubiles may not do it, wherearse if you fell out of the bed, landing on the floor awkwardly and harshly, you may have it sorted.
    Bonne chance, mon ami

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  16. Johnboy (15,564 comments) says:

    Paula a “nubile”???

    What size are you Yvette? :)

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  17. pq (728 comments) says:

    farrar please report in on things that are interesting ,
    you are a nz nat party yellow rag farrar,
    how many times do you need to be told ,
    we don’t care about the political mouth boring ,

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  18. Lance (2,557 comments) says:

    @pq

    It’s DPF’s blog
    If you don’t like it, fuck off.

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  19. Elaycee (4,332 comments) says:

    @pq: I hope your help arrives soon, so you can be weaned off the crap you are drinking / smoking / mainlining / snorting / licking / sucking / slurping, or most likely…. using as a pessary. You bring fresh meaning to the term: ‘moron’.

    @Lance (August 24th, 2012 at 7:59 am): +1

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  20. backster (2,122 comments) says:

    Much ado about nothing. Privatise the whole system.

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  21. hinamanu (2,352 comments) says:

    If you go on ACC you become a risk and won’t be employed. Esp 40+. You can kiss employment goodbye for life

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  22. Lance (2,557 comments) says:

    @hinamanu
    That’s a seriously broad brush generalization.
    So like a highly educated professional whom breaks his arm, is fucked for life?

    If that is where NZ is at then it is definitely down the toilet.

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  23. flipper (3,834 comments) says:

    The good Whale is referencing an “independent KPMG report”. It may well be the best. It may not.
    How did it originate and who received/published it ?
    What is its status?
    I have kept reasonably close to the issue, but must confess that it passed me by. Help!

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  24. Paulus (2,559 comments) says:

    Am concerned over the underlying political overtones of some of the employees in ACC, and as has been seen with say MFAT and other Government departments, the overt political colours of a number of public servants.
    Not good – was but not now if you cannot trust the public service.
    Note now today KiwiRail stolen report – anything to damage the National Government – would not have happened under Clark/Simpson.

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  25. annie (540 comments) says:

    google “pdf to word” free. Problem solved.

    I use a historic giveaway version of PDF to Word, but there’s plenty of free pdf converters out there.

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