Policies & Publications
SBS Privacy Statement
SBS's program material is exempt from the Privacy Act (see 'Privacy and SBS program material' below).
The IPPs regulate how personal information is collected, stored and maintained, how it can be accessed, and the way it is used and disclosed.
The IPPs can be accessed through the website of the Office of the Privacy Commissioner.
'Personal information' is defined in the Privacy Act as 'information or an opinion (including information or an opinion forming part of a database) whether true or not, and whether recorded in a material form or not, about an individual whose identity is apparent, or can reasonably be ascertained, from the information or opinion'.
Privacy and SBS program material
SBS's program material is exempt from the Privacy Act. The general purpose of this exemption, and the exemption for the acts and practices of private sector media organisations done in the course of journalism, is to allow for the free flow of information to the public.
SBS recognises the need to balance the rights of individuals to privacy and freedom of expression in its Codes of Practice, which set out the principles and policies it uses to guide its programming. Code 1.9 deals with privacy.
The rights of individuals to privacy should be respected in all SBS programs. However, in order to provide information to the public which relates to a person's performance of public duties or about other matters of public interest, intrusions upon privacy may, in some circumstances, be justified.
If you consider that SBS has breached the SBS Codes of Practice you may make a formal complaint to the SBS Ombudsman. To make a formal complaint you must follow the steps in Code 8 (see 'How to make a formal complaint').
The types of information SBS collects
SBS collects a wide range of personal information in the course of its operations including personal information contained in:
- employee records;
- applications from prospective employees and work experience students (see 'SBS Recruitment and Selection Privacy Statement' available from SBS and on the SBS Jobs website;
- audience correspondence and complaints; - contacts lists; - online forum registrations; - email newsletter subscriptions;
- SMS service requests; - competition entry forms.
SBS only collects personal information for purposes that are directly related to its functions or activities under the Special Broadcasting Service Act 1991.
When SBS collects personal information from you it will inform you of the reason the information is being collected and to whom it usually gives that kind of information. If the collection is authorised or required by law, SBS will inform you of that fact.
SBS takes steps to ensure that the personal information it collects is relevant to its purpose, up to date and complete. SBS will not intrude to an unreasonable extent upon the personal affairs of the individual concerned.
Information collected via the SBS website
If you visit the SBS website, SBS's internet service provider makes a record of the visits and logs the following information for statistical purposes:
- the user's server address; - the user's top-level domain name (e.g. .au, .com, .gov); - the date and time of the visit; - the pages accessed and documents downloaded; - the previous site visited; and - the type of browser used.
No attempt will be made to identify SBS website users or their browsing activities except as required by a law enforcement agency exercising a warrant to inspect the service provider's logs.
SBS makes use of 'cookies' to enhance the functionality of its website. Cookies are not used to record any personal information (such as name, email address).
SBS collects personal information that individuals provide to it via its website, such as in online subscription forms, competition entries and feedback to SBS. SBS will only use this personal information for the purpose for which it was provided to SBS.
Where an SBS website is produced in conjunction with a third party ('SBS Partner'), personal information submitted to that website may be recorded by either SBS or the SBS Partner. However, SBS imposes contractual restrictions equivalent to those imposed on SBS under the Privacy Act in respect of collection and use of personal information by such third parties.
SBS appreciates that some people may not wish to submit information via email or the internet. If you do not wish to submit personal information to SBS through our websites or via email you can write to SBS at Locked Bag 028, Crows Nest NSW 1585.
Use and disclosure
SBS only uses the personal information it collects and records for the purposes for which it was supplied, or for purposes directly related to that purpose and will not use it for any other purpose, or disclose it unless:
- the individual concerned has consented;
- the individual concerned was made aware that such disclosure was likely;
- its use or disclosure is necessary to prevent or lessen a serious and imminent threat to somebody's life or health;
- its use or disclosure is required or authorised by law;
- its use or disclosure is reasonably necessary for the enforcement of the criminal law or of a law imposing a pecuniary penalty, or for the protection of public revenue.
Information about the types of records kept by SBS
The SBS Personal Information Digest sets out the types of records of personal information it keeps, their purpose, the classes of individuals about whom the records are kept, the period for which they are kept, how they are stored, the persons entitled to have access to the personal information contained in them and the conditions under which they are entitled to that access, and how individuals can obtain access to the personal information.
SBS's Personal Information Digest can be accessed through the website of the Office of the Privacy Commissioner.
Access and correction
Individuals are entitled to obtain access to records that contain personal information about them except to the extent that SBS is required or authorised to refuse access under any law of the Commonwealth that provides for access by persons to documents (e.g. the Freedom of Information Act 1982).
Individuals can obtain information regarding access to records that contain personal information about them by contacting the SBS Privacy Contact Officer.
SBS will take reasonable steps to ensure that the personal information it holds is accurate, relevant to its purpose, up to date, complete and not misleading.
SBS takes steps to ensure that the personal information it holds is protected against loss, and unauthorised access, use, modification, disclosure or other misuse.
If you think that an act or practice of SBS has interfered with your privacy you may make a complaint to SBS. You will need to identify yourself and provide your complaint in written form addressed to the SBS Privacy Contact Officer (see Contact SBS below).
The SBS Privacy Contact Officer will investigate your complaint and will endeavour to provide a written response within 30 days of receipt of the complaint setting out SBS's decision.
If you are dissatisfied with SBS's response to your complaint you can take your complaint to the Office of the Privacy Commissioner (see 'Contact the Office of the Privacy Commissioner' below). The Privacy Commissioner may then investigate and attempt to conciliate the matter.
+61 2 9430 3813 (Freecall 1800 500 727; TTY 1800 502 828)
+61 2 9430 3047
Privacy Contact Officer Strategy and Communications
SBS Locked Bag 028
Crows Nest NSW 1585
Contact the Office of the Privacy Commissioner
1300 363 992 (TTY 1800 620 241)
Translating and Interpreting Service: 131 450
+61 2 9284 9666
GPO Box 5218
Sydney NSW 2001
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