Vic govt opens new privacy and data-protection office

The Victorian state government in Australia has opened a new government office focused on privacy and data protection.

The Victorian state government in Australia has set forth on reforms to its data-security privacy legislation today, with Attorney-General Robert Clark announcing the formation of a new office of the Privacy and Data Protection Commissioner.

The new office combines the functions of the office of the state's Privacy Commissioner and the commissioner for Law Enforcement Data Security.

"David Watts, who is currently the commissioner for Law Enforcement Data Security, will lead the transition project to bring the two existing bodies into the one new entity," Clark said in a statement.

The new commissioner will also be responsible for implementing a new Victorian Protective Security Policy Framework (VPSPF). It is aimed at better managing how information is classified and secured by state government departments and agencies. Once the framework is in place, the new commissioner will be responsible for monitoring departments' compliance with the VPSPF.

"This new combined oversight role will be better able to respond the new and emerging challenges affecting information privacy and data protection, including those identified by the Victorian auditor-general in his 2009 Report on Maintaining the Integrity and Confidentiality of Personal Information," Clark said.