The privacy and security of information about individuals and ACCESS’ clients is paramount.  ACCESS is committed to the protection of personal privacy and treats all information as confidential and handles information it collects in accordance with the Privacy Act and the National Privacy Principles.  This policy describes the information ACCESS collects, how ACCESS uses that information, how that information may be disclosed, the security of that information and how to contact ACCESS.


COLLECTION OF INFORMATION

ACCESS obtains its preliminary information from its clients.  Clients generally obtain this information from their own customers directly, or from their agents or intermediaries. Information gathered by ACCESS during the course of its activities comes from sources such as paper trails and legal searches e.g. the electronic white pages. ACCESS also obtains information on persons via Sentrix and FCS, which are databases that provide online public records. The information gathered by ACCESS may also come from third parties, such as referees with a connection to the person.  The personal information collected by ACCESS may include details such as name, age, gender, contact information, date of birth, driver’s licence details, employment history, business history and financial history including income.  The type of information collected will depend on the requirements of ACCESS clients.


HOW DOES ACCESS USE THE INFORMATION?

The information obtained by ACCESS in regards to persons and its clients is used for the purpose of ACCESS’ business, that being the investigation and location of persons, collection of arrears and asset repossession, professional account rehabilitation, debt collection and process service for the finance and business sector.
ACCESS enquires during its course of business are in accordance to regulations set by the Consumer Credit Code, Australian Competition and Consumer Commission and the relevant debt collection guidelines. Other than for the purposes of its business, ACCESS will not use personal information and its clients information without prior consent. The only exception to this rule is where disclosure is necessary to prevent injury to life or health, to investigate any suspected unlawful activity or where it may be required by law such as in a response to a warrant, subpoena or other legal process.


SECURITY OF INFORMATION

ACCESS takes reasonable steps to ensure the security of all information it collects from risks such as loss or unauthorised access, destruction, use, modification or disclosure of data. ACCESS operates a database system (MIMS) and access to this system is only available to clients and authorised personnel by an encrypted password. Each ACCESS client is issued with an individual password and the database is unable to cross reference persons, account numbers, motor vehicles details, addresses or any other information that would identify a person from material provided. It is ACCESS’ policy that personal and client data and information is stored in its database system and that file copies are retained in locked compactus for a period of 7 years. All the staff at ACCESS are required to enter confidentiality agreements and review of the privacy laws are regularly provided to ACCESS staff. This ensures that ACCESS staff are aware of the sensitive nature of the data and information that ACCESS handle and are aware of the consequences if they breach of the Privacy Act or other relevant legislation. Data and information collected on behalf of a client is only shared with authorised staff of the client. However, no data transmission over the internet or information stored on servers accessible through the internet can be guaranteed to be fully secured.


DISCLOSURE OF PERSONAL INFORMATION

Due to the nature and the purpose of data and information collected by ACCESS, some personal information can be disclosed or passed on to third parties but only where there is valid reason for that to happen or as necessary to carry out ACCESS’ business or required by law or other legislative or legal processes. Third parties to whom information may be disclosed to include, but no limited to: – auditors, solicitors and other professional consultants; – government department or agencies (where required or authorised by Law). ACCESS will not disclose information about person or clients in circumstances other than those described above without prior consent. The only exception to this rule is where disclosure is necessary to prevent injury to life or health, to investigate any suspected unlawful activity or where it may be required by law such as in a response to a warrant, subpoena or other legal process. ACCESS requires written authorisation to disclose information or receive information from a third party. As a matter of course, ACCESS will require anyone whom information is made available to respect the privacy of the person or client whom it relates.


LINKS TO OTHER WEBSITES

ACCESS is not responsible for the privacy practices or content of any other Website that may be linked to this Website. It is your responsibility to investigate the privacy policies of those other sites.


CHANGES TO THIS PRIVACY POLICY

This privacy policy may change from time to time particularly as new rules, regulations and industry codes are introduced.


HOW TO CONTACT ACCESS

Persons or clients who want to know what information ACCESS holds about them and how it has been used or anyone who have any questions or concerns are invited to contact to the General Manager, Access Mercantile Agency–

By mail to: PO Box 380 Mitcham Vic 3132

By facsimile: 03 9874 1277
By email: michael@accessmercantile.com.au

Thank you for taking the time to read ACCESS’ Privacy Policy.