Knowing your privacy—Internet privacy laws and privacy policies

We’ve been told for years to be careful what information about ourselves that we publish online. Some of us heed these warnings, while some of us shake them off and believe everything will be fine, privacy breaches won’t happen to us or if they do, we’ll never know.

However with changes to the internet privacy laws, not knowing if our privacy has been breached will be a thing of the past.

From February 23, businesses with an annual turnover of $3 million or more will be required to comply with the Notifiable Data Breaches (NDB) scheme. Under the scheme, if a major data breach occurs that will likely result in serious harm (such as physical, emotional or financial), are required to notify affected customers/clients. In the past and until February 22, under internet privacy laws notification has been merely voluntary not required. This scheme and its requirements will lead to major changes in the privacy policies of these businesses.

So now you know about these changes to internet privacy laws and that they will affect privacy policies, but do you know how a privacy policy works?

A privacy policy is a policy that informs internet visitors and for businesses, their prospective and current customers/clients, that their personal information will be kept private and will be protected under relevant internet privacy laws. Privacy policies also cover spam and whether information is shared.

Privacy policies should generally make it clear what type of information is stored, the purposes for collecting the information, how it’s stored, how it can be accessed, what to do if or when breaches occur, and so on.

While there are clearly strict internet privacy laws, the internet itself also makes it easier for website managers and business owners with websites to comply with these laws. The internet can easily provide privacy policy templates and there are even privacy policy generators now!

So now you know about the changes to internet privacy laws and how privacy policies work and their requirements. The next time you create a social media account, subscribe to a newsletter or shop online, you now know what to be aware of when it comes to your privacy and how it now has extra protection.

Internet privacy laws and privacy policies