Privacy at the University of Western Australia

The University of Western Australia strongly respects the privacy of students, staff and other members of the University community. UWA is committed to the responsible and legal management of personal information collected on behalf of the University.

The University has obligations regarding the collection, use and management of personal and health information under various pieces of legislation.  

The University must comply with the Australian Privacy Principles, contained within the Privacy Act 1988 (Commonwealth), in relation to students’ personal information obtained for the purposes of chapter 3 and 4 of the Higher Education Support Act 2003 (Commonwealth). The University has further obligations in relation to the personal data it collects and manages under the Health Services Act 2016 (WA) and the Freedom of Information Act 1992 (WA).

The University is also considered in limited circumstances to be a data controller for the purposes of the European Union General Data Protection Regulation 2016/679 (GDPR) in relation to the collection of personal information from individuals located in the European Union (EU).

Apart from as above the University is not subject to the Privacy Act 1988 (Commonwealth) and unlike other Australian States and Territories there is no current Western Australian Information/Data Privacy Act.

The University has in the absence of such legislation enacted its Information Privacy policy, which affirms the University’s commitment to the Australian Privacy Principles for all personal information it collects and manages.  This policy applies to all areas of the University.

Any person who deals with the University is entitled to expect that their personal information will be treated in accordance with this policy.

The University’s Information Privacy policy can be accessed through the UWA Policy Library, and is accompanied by the UWA Information Privacy Guide – Policy Guideline [PDF, 146KB], along with links to other supporting material.

In addition to the policy UWA Staff and Students should also read the information specific to them, available on our student or staff web pages.

The University has distilled and summarised its commitment to information privacy through the UWA Information Privacy Tenets.

1. Notice
Inform individuals what personal information you are collecting and why
2. Purpose
Collect only what personal information is legitimately needed for the purpose
3. Security
Protect personal information by using adequate security
4. Sharing
Do not disclose personal information unless you are confident it is directly connected with its purpose
5. Relevancy
Ensure personal information remains relevant, by allowing individuals to review and correct their data
6. Accountability
Handling personal information is your responsibility
7. Transparency
Be open and vigilant, and report concerns or potential improvements

The University’s Privacy Office, which is operated out of the Office of Strategy, Planning and Performance, is responsible for the University’s information Privacy policy, guidance and advice on privacy obligations and responsibilities and managing enquiries and concerns about the University’s collection and management of personal information.

For more detail on the Privacy Office and how to contact it please see our Privacy Office page.