The protection of privacy is important to us at People Check Pty Ltd (“PeopleCheck”). We treat all personal information as confidential and handle in accordance with the Australian Privacy Principles the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) and other data protection legislation, both global (eg the European Union General Data Protection Regulation – GDPR) and local (eg Singapore Personal Data Protection Act 2012), where relevant.
PeopleCheck provides reference, background checking and validation services and is engaged by its clients to validate the skills, qualifications, experience and background of potential employees. We are under an obligation to keep a candidate’s information confidential and not to use it for any other purpose other than background screening and validation.
The reason for the background and reference checks being undertaken is to enable our client to assess an individual’s (“the candidate”) suitability for employment or appointment; this may be for new employment, a role change within an existing employer and/or for compliance purposes.
- You have provided it to us, for instance:
- you are a candidate applying for a role with one of our clients;
- you are a client of our company;
- you have provided information to us about one of our candidates; and/or
- you contact us to make comments, complaints or to ask us questions;
- We need it to provide a product or service that you or one of our clients have requested from us for instance, you are applying for a new job and our client requires you to complete a background check;
- You work for us, or apply to us for a job or work experience;
- You or your company provides services to us; and/or
- For purposes directly related to any of the above.
What Kinds of Personal Information do we Collect, Use, Disclose and Store
PeopleCheck will only request, collect, use, disclose and store information that is needed in order for us to carry out our services and this may include personal and/or sensitive information, including your IP address.
We will never knowingly send you unsolicited commercial electronic messages. Our email newsletters and updates comply with the Spam Act 2003 (Cth) for express and implied consent.
You may elect to no longer receive our newsletters at any time by clicking the unsubscribe link at the bottom of the email or replying to the newsletter with a request to unsubscribe. If you subscribe to our email newsletter we will not sell, rent, share or disclose your details to any third party without your consent.
Personal information is any information or an opinion (whether true or not) about a person. It may range from the very sensitive (e.g. criminal history) to the everyday (e.g. address and telephone number). It would include the opinions of others about a candidate’s work performance (whether true or not), work experience and qualifications and other information obtained by PeopleCheck in connection with a candidate’s background.
When PeopleCheck validates a candidate’s background, it may receive additional information relevant to the employment application which verifies or adds to the information already held regarding the candidate. Should PeopleCheck receive unsolicited personal information that could not have been collected by PeopleCheck under the Australian Privacy Principles detailed in the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) and it is not relevant to our background checking, PeopleCheck will destroy this information.
Sensitive information is a special category of personal information. Sensitive information can, in most cases, only be disclosed with an individual’s specific consent. It is information or opinion about an individual’s:
- Racial or ethnic origin;
- Political opinion;
- Membership of a political association or religious beliefs, affiliations or philosophical beliefs;
- Membership of a professional or trade association or membership of a trade union;
- Sexual preferences or practices;
- Criminal record; and
- Health or disability (at any time).
Our Background and Reference Checking Service
Depending on the background checks required, PeopleCheck may validate and/or collect the one or all of the following types of information regarding a candidate:
- Employment history (such as HR or Payroll) and references (such as former managers or nominated referees);
- Education, professional qualifications and memberships;
- Identity (including obtaining/verifying national identity numbers, where relevant);
- Right to work in Australia;
- Driving history;
- Any police/criminal history information recorded about them;
- Medical history (including drug and alcohol); and
- Claims, judgements, bankruptcies, current and previous directorships and other public records.
Disclosure of Personal Information to Third Parties
PeopleCheck may disclose your personal information to third parties for the following purposes:
- To provide the service we have been engaged to undertake (e.g. Background and Reference checking);
- For research purposes relating to the performance, quality, maintenance and improvement of PeopleCheck’s services and products;
- To inform you of information which may be of interest to you;
- To provide technical support to you to use PeopleCheck’s services;
- If permitted or required by law; or
- Otherwise, with your express consent.
Where your consent is requested it is important that you fully understand the implications of providing such consent. Your consent must be freely given and you are able to refuse or withdraw your consent at any time. In some circumstances, there may be implications for refusing consent. If at any time you wish to withdraw your consent in part or full, you should contact us immediately and, if possible, in writing to ensure your request is actioned promptly.
PeopleCheck is assisted by a variety of third parties to deliver the services offered by us and operate our business on a day-to-day basis. These third parties are too numerous to list and they change from time-to-time. Further, various third parties may be contacted during the background checking of a particular candidate and will often vary on a case-by-case basis. Some examples of the types of third parties include:
- Identity verification providers such as the Document Verification Service or VIX Verify Pty Ltd;
- Technology service providers;
- Data storage partners;
- Website host such as Go Daddy;
- Software development firms such as Accio Data, located in Dripping Springs, Texas, United States of America
- Government departments (direct and through brokers) such as ASIC, AFSA, The Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission (ACIC) etc; and
- Medical assessment service providers.
Wherever possible, PeopleCheck engages Australian third parties that are subject to the same Australian Privacy Principles detailed in the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) as PeopleCheck and/or impose equivalent contractual restrictions.
In some cases, such as when undertaking validations (with a former employer, educational institutes, government departments, for example), PeopleCheck’s ability to impose adherence to Australian Privacy Principles is limited. In those circumstances, PeopleCheck will carefully consider the risks to the protection of personal information when releasing information. We use all reasonable means to verify the accuracy and completeness of information, statements and opinions made available to us during our enquiries.
Some organisations we contact may have their own processes for releasing information; these are mandatory and often in line with data protection legislation outside of Australia. As a result, some organisations may request you provide very specific consent and/or may only release information directly to you, which in turn you can provide to your employer or PeopleCheck to finalise your background checking. This can be the case even when you freely sign PeopleCheck’s Consent Form to act on your behalf. Additional consent may be requested in the form of another consent form, telephone call, through an online platform or other methods. PeopleCheck understand that these additional requirements can be frustrating, but they are in place to protect your privacy and it is important that we follow them.
Cross-Border Disclosure of Personal Information
Personal information collected as a part of our background and reference checking service is collected via PeopleCheck’s online platform, PRIVI. PRIVI, or PeopleCheck Research, Investigation and Validation Interface is hosted by Accio Data, a United States of America-based software development firm located in Dripping Springs, Texas. You need to be aware that your information will be stored in the USA on PRIVI.
In addition to storing your information on PRIVI, in some cases, it may also be necessary to collect and release your information outside of Australia and we will require your express consent to do this. In most cases, this will generally be because you have resided overseas and background and reference checking is required to be undertaken in this particular region. Sometimes, our client may be based overseas and your information will be provided to them. You have the option to nominate the countries we may disclose your information to or you can elect to withhold your consent to such disclosure. If you have any questions as to whether your information will be disclosed overseas, please contact us so we may discuss your specific circumstances.
If you or our client have resided, or currently reside in the EU Union, some specific requirements may apply to the transfer of your information. If you have any restrictions or conditions regarding the release of your information, be sure to advise us as soon as possible.
How Do We Collect and Store Personal Information
PeopleCheck collects personal information through a variety of means, such as (but not limited to), in person at PeopleCheck’s offices, verbally over the phone, in writing via email or fax, or through online sources, including PRIVI (PeopleCheck’s client and candidate management systems).
PeopleCheck will take all reasonable and practicable steps to ensure that your personal information is properly protected from misuse or loss and unauthorised access, modification or disclosure. In addition, we encourage you to be vigilant about the protection of your own personal information when providing your information to PeopleCheck and choose the delivery avenue that best meets your own data disclosure expectations.
We employ appropriate technical, administrative and physical procedures to protect personal information from unauthorised disclosure, loss, misuse, interference or alteration during its collection, use, disclosure and storage. We limit access to personal information to individuals with a business need consistent with the reason the information was provided. PeopleCheck has internal policies surrounding the management of personal information and is committed to training its people to ensure compliance with these policies. We keep personal information only for as long as it is required for business purposes or as required by law.
It is necessary for us to store your information and this may be done through a variety of means, such as (but not limited to): electronically on PeopleCheck’s web-based document management and storage system; PRIVI (stored in the USA) and backups; and, hard copy onsite at PeopleCheck offices.
How You Can Access, Correct and Remove your Personal Information
Subject to some exceptions which are set out in the Australian Privacy Principles (Principle 12 – Access to, and correction of, personal information), you have a right to see and obtain a copy of personal and sensitive information about you held by PeopleCheck. We will require you to put your request in writing and we will respond to such a request within a reasonable period after the request is made. We will provide access to the information in the manner you request it, providing it is reasonable and practicable to do so. If it is not possible to provide you with access in the manner you request, we will take steps to give you access in a way that meets the needs of both parties.
If we have undertaken a National Police History Check/Nationally coordinated criminal history check through the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission or the Australian Federal Police and you do not agree with the results, you can contact us to dispute the result. PeopleCheck accepts and escalates all disputes.
We will take reasonable steps to correct personal information collected about you where: PeopleCheck is satisfied that, having regard to its purpose is inaccurate, out of date, incomplete, irrelevant or misleading; or you request we correct information. If PeopleCheck is unable to agree that personal or sensitive information held about you is inaccurate, out of date, incomplete, irrelevant or misleading, we will advise you in writing of the reasons for the refusal. You may request that a statement is included with the information that claims that particular information is inaccurate, out of date, incomplete, irrelevant or misleading.
If you wish to exercise your rights of access and correction, or would like to complain about a refusal, you should contact our Privacy Officer using the contact details below. Personal information will only be released to individuals directly, unless we are provided with a written, signed authority to provide it to a third party.
In some cases, PeopleCheck may impose a moderate charge for providing access to personal or sensitive information. We will not charge you simply because you lodge a request for access.
Unless there is an exception, you may have the right to request we destroy your data or have it de-identified. This may apply where the information is no longer necessary for the purpose for which it was collected, or where you withdraw your consent and there is no other legal reason for processing your data. If you would like to exercise your rights in this respect, please contact us.
How Suspected Privacy Breaches are handled
PeopleCheck handles all suspected Data Breaches in accordance with the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth). If you suspect your information has been breached, please contact us via the details below and we will investigate this for you.
Alternatively, if you wish to complain about a breach of the Australian Privacy Principles, or a registered APP code (if any) that binds PeopleCheck, you can contact us via the details below. We will respond to your request within a reasonable period after the request is made and, where appropriate, ensure that a response is issued in writing for your records.
You can also make a complaint to the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner on 1300 363 992 or via other means available on their website: www.oaic.gov.au.
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If you wish to contact us about your personal or sensitive information, or you wish to dispute a National Police History Check/Nationally coordinated criminal history check through the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission or the Australian Federal Police you should contact our Privacy Officer in writing:
People Check Pty Ltd
PO Box 40
BOOLAROO NSW 2284
Telephone: +612 4023 0603
Fax: +612 4957 7441