Invasion of privacy tort proposed for Australia

Posted On September 15, 2014
In Privacy in Cyberspace / Reply

The Australian Law Reform Commission (ALRC) has proposed a new statutory tort to deal with invasions of privacy in the digital era.

In its Final Report on Serious Evasions of Privacy in the Digital Era“, the ALRC proposed that the new tort should apply where there has been:

  • a serious
  • intentional or reckless
  • intrusion into seclusion or misuse of private information
  • of a person in a situation in which they have a reasonable expectation of privacy
  • where the public interest in privacy is not outweighed by any countervailing public interests

The ALRC’s press release gives two examples of the type of privacy invasion to which the new tort will apply:  posting sexually explicit photos of someone on the internet without their permission, and making public someone’s medical records.

The Australian government is yet to release its response to the ALRC’s proposal.

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