Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Australian Biometrics Institute Privacy Code

The Biometrics Institute in Australia have a voluntary Privacy Code, approved by the Australian Privacy Commissioner Karen Curtis, which applies to organisations that have agreed to be covered by the Code. The code came into effect September 2006.

The Code includes privacy standards that are at least equivalent to the National Privacy Principles (NPPs) in the Privacy Act and also incorporates higher standards of privacy
- sounds like the sort of boost our UK Data Protection Act could do with regards to biometrics, certainly in the area of using fingerprint softwear in schools.

On the third page of the Privacy Code, point 2 states that:

The Biometrics Institute Privacy Code seeks to build upon the National Privacy Principles (NPPs) in a manner that provides the community with the assurance needed to encourage informed and voluntary participation in biometrics programs. Biometrics Institute members understand that only by adopting and promoting ethical practices, openness and transparency can these technologies gain widespread acceptance.

The "informed and voluntary participation" and "adoption and promoting of ethical practices, openess and transparency" are points the biometric companies, schools and government in the UK could do with taking on board, at the very least in circumstances where children are involved.

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