Privacy

Find out about your online privacy rights when using our website.

Privacy statement

We are committed to protecting your privacy.

We aim to offer an online environment that makes sure the information you give us is secure.

We follow:

These laws and guidelines are reflected in our Privacy policy. For more information see our Privacy policy for more information.

Anonymous reports

When you deal with us you have the right be anonymous and the right to use a pseudonym.

You can report an issue anonymously to us, in English or another language. To find out more, see Report an issue anonymously.

Why we collect your personal information

Under the Fair Work Act 2009 (the Act), we can collect personal information to promote compliance with the Act and Fair Work instruments (s672(1)(a)(ii)). This includes providing education, assistance, and advice to the Australian community.

When you visit our website, there are different levels of personal information we collect according to how you are using the site.

The following information outlines when we will collect your personal information and why.

Browsing our website

When browsing our website, we record anonymous information about your visit. We log this information to collect and analyse statistics on how you use the website so we can develop better online services for you.

The anonymous information we collect won’t tell us anything about you as an individual, for example, your name or email. The information we log includes:

  • your server address
  • your operating system, for example, Windows, Mac
  • your top-level domain name, for example, .com, .gov, .au, .uk
  • the date and time of your visit to our site
  • the pages visited and the documents downloaded
  • the previous site visited
  • the type of browser used, for example, Internet Explorer, Firefox
  • the language selected for translation.

Cookies

We use cookies to track your website browsing behaviour. A cookie is a small text file a server puts on your hard drive. It shows us if you have visited our website more than once.

Your browser shares cookies with our server anonymously, so we won’t know your name or email. This lets us see the patterns of how you use our website. Cookies ‘remember’ your browser between page visits and identify your browser when you return to the site.

Subscribing to email alerts

We use Swift Digital, an online marketing platform service provider, to send and manage emails for our subscribers.

When you subscribe to our email and media updates:

  • we record your email address
  • we only use your email address for the reasons you gave it
  • we won’t add your email address to other mailing lists, unless you ask us to
  • you can use a pseudonym if you supply a valid email address.

All information collected using Swift Digital is the property of the Fair Work Ombudsman and it is never shared or used by third parties. For more information, please read Swift Digital’s Privacy Policy  and Terms and Conditions.

Giving feedback

We collect personal information when you submit feedback to us via the feedback form. Here we ask you to provide:

  • what type of feedback you’re giving, for example, if it’s general feedback or a complaint
  • a description of what the feedback is about. If it’s about reviewing a decision we’ve made, we’ll ask you to give more information about the matter
  • your My account details or a reference number for a previous enquiry
  • confirmation of whether or not you want a response from us:
    • if not, usually you can choose to remain anonymous
    • if yes, you’ll need to give us more personal information about yourself (for example, your name, email, and phone number).

We use this information to generate a feedback ticket. We can then assess your feedback and decide the best way to respond.

We collect your information on our Feedback and Complaints Management System, which stores it according to our record-keeping obligations. For more information, see ‘Storage and security of personal information’ in our Privacy policy .

Accessing and correcting your information

You have a right to access personal information that we hold about you. You also have a right under the Privacy Act to request corrections to any personal information that we hold about you if you think the information is inaccurate, out-of-date, incomplete, irrelevant, or misleading.

We can decline access to, or correction of, personal information in certain circumstances, as set out in the Privacy Act 1988.

Generally, if we refuse to give you access, we’ll notify you in writing, including the reasons for refusal and the mechanisms available to you to dispute that decision.

To find out more about how to access information we hold, see Accessing our information.

When we disclose information

We won’t identify you or your browsing activities, except if there is an investigation. In this case, a law enforcement agency can exercise a warrant to look at our logs.

We can provide your information to third parties in Australia or overseas who help us with our statutory functions and activities.

We can provide your personal information to:

  • government agencies and departments or anyone we are required or permitted to provide personal information to by law, or
  • researchers conducting research or survey work for us.

We can transfer your information to these third parties electronically, including via the internet.

When we no longer need this information for authorised purposes, we’ll take all reasonable steps de-identify it.

Using your information for surveys or research

When we provide personal information to third parties for surveys and research, we limit them to only using or disclosing your personal information for the reasons we have engaged them for.

Third parties conducting surveys or research for us must follow the same legal obligations we follow when it comes to your information.

If you don’t want your personal information to be used by or disclosed to third parties conducting research or surveys for us, or if you want to inspect, amend, or remove personal information we have about you, write to us at:

Privacy Officer  
Information Governance 
Fair Work Ombudsman
GPO Box 9887 
Sydney NSW 2001

Disposal of personal information

When we receive personal information about you (whether solicited or unsolicited), in almost all cases, we treat it as a Commonwealth record. Under the Archives Act 1983, we need to retain Commonwealth records until we can lawfully dispose of them. For example, through:

  • a ‘records authority’ issued or agreed to by the National Archives – a records authority determines how long we hold information and when we dispose of it
  • a ‘normal administrative practice’ – which allows information that is duplicated, unimportant, or of short-term value to be disposed of.

My account Privacy Notice

We collect your personal information when you register for a My account and when you make an enquiry. If we don’t collect your personal information, we can’t register your My account or respond to your online enquiries.

Registering for My account

The personal information we collect when you register for My account includes: 

  • your name 
  • if you are an employee, employer, or representative 
  • name of the enterprise agreement, if any, that covers you
  • your email 
  • gender 
  • if you are an employer: 
    • business name 
    • ABN 
    • your industry 
    • location 
    • how many employees you have
    • any industry awards that apply to your business (if known) 
    • any enterprise agreement that applies to your business (if any). 

If a third-party registers for My account on your behalf or provides us with your personal details, we will collect this information.

For more information, see My account terms and conditions and Why do I need to register for My account?

Making an enquiry

We may disclose your personal information to enable us to undertake appropriate enquiries. We will only do so if it is relevant to carry out our functions and activities. 

Our Privacy policy provides detailed information about how the FWO handles your personal information including:

  • how we collect your information 
  • using and disclosing your information 
  • storage and disposal of your information 
  • how to make a complaint.

Secure website transmissions

While we work to make sure our web environment is secure, there are some risks when providing information online.

To make sure your information is as secure as possible, we encrypt all messages between the browser running on your computer and its online site. The encryption process we use is Secure Socket Layer (SSL).

Privacy Impact Assessments

The Privacy (Australian Government Agencies – Governance) Australian Privacy Principles Code 2017 (Cth) requires all agencies, including the Fair Work Ombudsman, to conduct a Privacy Impact Assessment (PIA) for all high privacy risk projects.

We maintain this register of PIAs completed since the Code came into effect on 1 July 2018:

Date Title of PIA
July 2022 Security Clearance Project
May 2022 eBrief Document Bundling Solution
May 2022 Learning Management System (Acorn)
May 2022 New PACT
May 2022 FWO Awareness Survey
November 2021 Large Scale Wages Assessment Process
October 2021 Online Services Program
July 2021  Small Business Employer Advisory Service
July 2021 Inclusion@Work Index
June 2021 Survey of employees as part of an investigation
March 2021 Email subscription services
March 2021 Exploring the Factors Underlying Effective Return to Work Programs
December 2020 CaseWare IDEA
December 2020 Information and data sharing with ATO
December 2020 International Students Workplace Rights Quiz
August 2020 Mentoring Solution
July 2020 eDiscovery Platform
April 2020 COVID-19 Notification Process
February 2020 Consultation Hub
January 2020 HR Digital Project
September 2019 Transition from Lynda.com to LinkedIn Learning platform
August 2019 Qualtrics survey tool
June 2019 Customer Information Search

Contact us

For questions about your privacy, you can contact our Privacy Officer by:

  • emailing privacy@fwo.gov.au
  • writing to:
    Privacy Officer Information Governance
    Fair Work Ombudsman
    GPO Box 9887
    Sydney NSW 2001

Tools and resources

Privacy policy

Related information