HDPA is right

HDPA writes:

A big inquiry needs to be called into the allegations about the Māori Party misusing private data.

This can’t be left to a series of government departments to conduct small investigations into themselves.

I agree. As it is those very same agencies who made the decision to contract the organisations involved, the incentives are not good.

TPM has called for everything to be referred to the Police, but that is not the answer as what is alleged here doesn’t just involve potential crimes, but is far wider.

The possible options are:

  • The Privacy Commissioner launches an inquiry (but that limits it to privacy issues)
  • The Auditor-General launches an inquiry (but that limits it to the actions of agencies, and may not be able to look at data sharing by private organisations)
  • A Government inquiry. However this requires a Minister to initiate it, and as it involves another political party should only be done with their consent
  • A PSC inquiry. This can be launched by the Commissioner, and has some of the powers of a government inquiry (such as compelling witnesses) but can really only focus on the state actors.

The Government has now announced a PSC inquiry. This is good, but not sufficient. The Privacy Commissioner really needs to also do an inquiry, as only they can look into whether there is unauthorised data sharing between all the various entities in the Tamihere empire.

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