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Saturday, August 04, 2018

Plan to appoint Information Commissioner by end of June comes unstuck.

On 24 May, Secretary of the Attorney General's Department Chris Moraitis told Senate Estimates  (Page 51) the appointment of a replacement Australian Information Commissioner was in the process of being finalised:
"We are literally checking referees. I'll probably complete that tomorrow....
Once we've finalised the report in the next week or two, we will put a report to the Attorney again....and then government considers that.
I think the appointment is an acting arrangement for three months, so we have until around the last week of June to ideally have a new Office of the Australian Information Commissioner, Privacy Commissioner and FOI Commissioner. I think there's an option of renewing (the acting appointment) if that's not the case, but that's our timeline. We're working to that, if I may say so, as diligently as we can."
Still no news on this in the first week of August.

The OAIC has been underfunded since 2014 and will continue to be undermanned, even when a commissioner is appointed to carry out functions parliament decided warranted three commissioners.

In case the government hasn't noticed:
  • privacy concerns have gone through the roof- My Health Record is just the latest;
  • notifiable data breaches is a relatively new measure;
  • new data commissioner arrangements are in the process of being worked out, 
  • information policy is under all sorts of pressure, and
  • Freedom of Information is the usual battleground.

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