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Thursday, 20 April 1972
Page: 1323

Senator CARRICK (NEW SOUTH WALES) asked the AttorneyGeneral, upon notice:

Has the attention of the Attorney-General been drawn to the action by Mr Peter Coleman, a New South Wales M.L.A., calling for the registration, licensing and control of all data banks operated by public authorities, credit bureaux, private detective agencies and organisations who offer such data bank information for sale; if so, (a) is it not important that co-ordinated action should be taken in the States and the Territories of the Commonwealth to ensure the privacy of the individual and protection from abuse, and (b) what steps is the Commonwealth taking to achieve an effective and speedy resolution of this important matter.

Senator GREENWOOD The answer to the honourable senator's question is as follows:

My attention has been drawn to the statement referred to in the question. As to the two particular matters -

(a)   The problems relating to credit bureaux and computerised information were discussed by the Standing Committee of Attorneys-General in Melbourne in July 1971 and will again be considered by the Standing Committee at its next meeting to be held in Adelaide on 20th April 1972.

(b)   The regulation of the establishment and use of so-called data banks is primarily a matter within the legislative competence of the States but the Commonwealth is concerned wilh the position in the Commonwealth Territories, and is actively participating in the work of the Standing Committee in this respect.

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