Protocol Privacy Collection Statement

About this Statement

Protocol Branch (PRB) provides both services and policy advice to foreign missions, international organisations and other government agencies in accordance with our obligations under the Vienna Conventions on Diplomatic and Consular Relations.

Comprehensive guidance on PRB’s role and responsibilities may be found in the publicly available Protocol Guidelines.

PRB’s support and services include: facilitating agrément and credentials’ requirements for Australian and foreign Heads of Mission; providing diplomatic accreditation, visas and identity cards to officers posted to Australia; expediting the establishment of Embassies and Consulates in Canberra and the states; processing requests for Honorary Consul representation in Australia; providing reverse consular liaison between missions and Australian police and health services; and coordination of airport facilitation for visits by high-level dignitaries.

PRB provides policy advice to diplomatic missions and other government agencies on: privileges and immunities and rights of protection applicable under the Vienna Conventions and other International Law; indirect taxation concession schemes; bilateral arrangements for the gainful employment of dependants of diplomatic officials; engagement of foreign domestic workers by diplomatic officials; and issues related to the diplomatic estate in Canberra.

This collection notice describes how the Protocol Branch within the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade collects and handles personal information.

 

Why do we collect your personal information?

We collect, use and disclose your personal information to manage the presence in Australia of representatives of official foreign missions and International Organisations, their locally engaged staff and eligible family members, domestic workers and honorary consuls-general and honorary consuls, including to:

  1. Determine current and ongoing entitlement to accreditation;
  2. Administer various privileges and immunities;
  3. Determine and establish appropriate protection services for accredited representatives;
  4. Compile statistics and information for use in the preparation of official reports to Government and the Parliament;
  5. Publish the Diplomatic and Consular Lists and the List of Representatives of International Organisations on the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade website and in other formats;
  6. Provide the Foreign Heads of Mission After Hours and Emergency Contact List to Portfolio Ministers  and their offices and senior Australian officials;
  7. Provide ‘reverse consular’ liaison between missions and Australian police and health services.

How and when do we collect your personal information?

The Protocol Branch collects personal information from individuals and foreign missions when foreign representatives, eligible family members, domestic workers and honorary consuls-general and honorary consuls are nominated, and as required to provide protocol services.

For the purpose of providing protocol services, we collect your information from Australian government agencies, and State and Territory Governments, including the:

  • Attorney-General’s Department
  • Australian Federal Police
  • Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development
  • National Capital Authority
  • Australian Taxation Office
  • Australian Customs and Border Protection Service
  • Department of Immigration and Border Protection
  • Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet
  • Crimtrac Agency.

We may also collect personal information from other organisations, including airport authorities, in order to provide airport facilitation.

Authority for collection of personal information

Collection of this information is authorised by or under Australian law, being the Diplomatic Privileges and Immunities Act 1967, Consular Privileges and Immunities Act 1972, International Organisations (Privileges and Immunities) Act 1963, and Overseas Missions (Privileges and Immunities) Act 1995.

What happens if we do not collect your personal information?

If we do not collect your personal information, you will not be able to receive accreditation and/or appropriate protocol services.

Who do we disclose your personal information to?

We may disclose your personal information to other Australian government agencies, and State and Territory Governments including the:

  • Attorney-General’s Department
  • Australian Federal Police
  • Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development
  • National Capital Authority
  • Australian Taxation Office
  • Australian Customs and Border Protection Service
  • Department of Immigration and Border Protection
  • Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet; and
  • Crimtrac Agency.

We may also disclose your personal information to other organisations, including airport authorities, in order to provide airport facilitation.

Do we provide this information overseas?

In order to provide accreditation and other protocol services, we may provide personal information we collect to ‘receiving state’ governments and other authorities where it is necessary for our diplomatic or consular functions or activities.

How we store and protect personal information

Access by departmental staff to personal information contained in protocol files is strictly limited on a ‘need to know’ basis.

Sensitive personal information stored in DFAT’s databases can only be accessed by authorised users for the purpose of working on particular enquiries, complaints, applications, or cases.  These databases maintain an audit trail whenever personal information is included, amended, or deleted.

We take steps to protect the personal information we hold against misuse, interference and loss; and from unauthorised access, modification or disclosure. These steps include password protection for electronic files, securing paper files in locked cabinets and physical access restrictions.

Personal information held by DFAT in Commonwealth records is managed securely through our recordkeeping system. When no longer required to be retained as part of a Commonwealth record, personal information is destroyed in accordance with the Archives Act 1983.

How do you find out more about our privacy practices?

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade Privacy Policy describes how we protect and manage personal information, including how you can access and seek to correct your personal information, how to make a complaint about our privacy practices, and how your complaint will be handled.

To find out more about how PRB manages your personal information you can contact:

Protocol Branch
Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
RG Casey Building
John McEwen Crescent
BARTON ACT 0221

Tel: 0418 167 127
Email: Protocol.Branch@dfat.gov.au

From time to time, we will review and revise this privacy collection notice. We reserve the right to amend this notice at any time.

Date last updated: Friday, May 08, 2015

Last Updated: 8 May 2015