The give and take of public privacy in the big data era

Privacy means different things to different people. To a lot of public servants and academics, it’s become a barrier to a world of valuable insights and new investigative tools.

For others, privacy is a fundamental right shown less and less respect by governments over recent years — except when they are being asked to release their own information.

Last Thursday, Attorney-General George Brandis confirmed once again that the current government sees little value in the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner, which oversees both freedom of information and privacy.

In announcing Timothy Pilgrim’s re-appointment as Privacy Commissioner, Brandis confirmed Pilgrim is now also the permanent Information Commissioner, a role he has acted in since July 2015.

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