News & Security Advice

National

Safe Work Australia report on Work Health and Safety

The Measuring and Reporting on Work Health and Safety report provides an evidence based framework for:

  • identifying appropriate Work Health and Safety key performance indicators
  • designing useful Work Health and Safety reports, and
  • considering Work Health and Safety performance data in a way that adds value to business decisions.

View Report

Fair Work Commission penalty rates case decision

We advise members that the Fair Work Commission penalty rates decision announced today (23 February) does not apply to security industry awards.

The affected Awards where reduced penalty rates apply are for the retail, fast food, hospitality, club, restaurant and pharmacy industries.

Fair Work Commission penalty rates case decision

National Broadband Network – Migration of monitored fire alarms and lift phones

As the National Broadband Network (NBN) rolls out across Australia, Telstra’s existing fixed line networks are being progressively disconnected. Monitored fire alarms and lift phones operating over these networks will cease to operate unless they are migrated to an alternate telecommunications network before the disconnection date for their rollout region.

Monitored fire alarms and lift phones are safety-critical services and there are serious public safety, personal injury and property damage risks if they fail to operate in an emergency situation. It is important that you register your services and make early arrangements for their migration by talking to your fire alarm monitoring and/or lift service provider. Migration does not happen automatically. Importantly, even if your regular phone and internet services have already migrated to the NBN, this does not mean that your lift or monitored fire alarm service has also been migrated.

If you are responsible for a monitored fire alarm or lift phone, you will need to contact your fire alarm monitoring and/or lift service provider as soon as possible. Your provider will be able to give advice on the most appropriate migration solution. Further information is available in the Migration of Monitored Fire Alarm and Lift Phone Services Good Practice Guide.

You will also need to register your services on NBN Co Limited’s (nbn’s) Fire and Lift Register. The Register helps support the safe migration of monitored fire alarm and lift phone services, and identifies services which may be eligible for deferred disconnection up until 30 June 2017.

To register you will need to provide the monitored fire alarm or lift phone telephone number, details of the building location, and contact details of the person registering.

For more information visit www.communications.gov.au/fireandlift, or to register a service visit www.nbn.com.au/fireandlift or call 1800 687 626.

Australian Privacy and Information Commissioner – Mandatory data breach notification

Australian Privacy and Information Commissioner, Timothy Pilgrim has welcomed the passage of the Privacy Amendment (Notifiable Data Breaches) Bill 2016, which establishes a mandatory data breach notification scheme in Australia.

"This amendment will require government agencies and businesses covered by the Privacy Act to notify any individuals affected by a data breach that is likely to result in serious harm," Mr Pilgrim said.

"My office will be advised of these breaches, and can determine if further action is required.  The law also gives me the ability to direct an agency or business to notify individuals about a serious data breach.

"The new scheme will strengthen the protections afforded to everyone’s personal information, and will improve transparency in the way that the public and private sectors respond to serious data breaches.

"It will also give individuals the opportunity to take steps to minimise the damage that can result from unauthorised use of their personal information.

"My office will be working closely with agencies and businesses to help prepare for the scheme’s commencement. This will include providing additional guidance over the next 12 months, and events hosted through the OAIC’s Privacy Professionals Network.

"In the meantime, agencies and businesses should continue to take reasonable steps to make sure personal information is held securely – including being equipped with a clear response plan in the event of a data breach."

The OAIC’s Data breach notification — a guide to handling personal information security and Guide to developing a data breach response plan provide a best practice model, and will be updated in consultation with stakeholders ahead of the commencement of the mandatory notification scheme. The OAIC also has a comprehensive Guide to securing personal information.

ASQA cancels qualifications issued by Queensland security trainer

The Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA) has announced its intention to cancel 461 qualifications and statements of attainment issued to 236 individuals by the now-deregistered training provider Peacemakers Security Pty Ltd (Peacemakers).

ASQA cancelled Peacemakers’ registration as a provider of vocational education and training (VET) in July because of its failure to meet the national training standards. ASQA contends that the company was issuing qualifications and statements of attainment with almost no training being provided.

After reviewing the provider’s assessment records, ASQA has decided to cancel all qualifications and statements of attainment issued by Peacemakers between March and July this year because it believes the holders of those qualifications have not been properly assessed.

ASQA is endeavouring to contact – by post, email, SMS and social media - the individuals involved using details contained in the provider’s files and information from the Queensland security licensing body.

It is important that anyone who received a qualification and/or statement of attainment through Peacemakers between March and June this year read and understand the information sent to them.

The cancellation of the qualifications and/or statements of attainment is not automatic – individuals have the opportunity to submit evidence and information to ASQA as to why their qualifications should not be cancelled.

However, should ASQA proceed to cancel the qualifications and statements of attainment, individuals who still want to obtain a license to work in the security industry will have to regain their qualification through another training provider.

Any student who received a qualification from Peacemakers between March and June this year and has not received a letter – or would like more information - should contact the ASQA Info Line on 1300 701 801 or emailqualifications.review@asqa.gov.au.

Changes to Aviation Transport & Maritime Security legislation toughens security access

Changes to the Aviation Transport Security Act 2004 and the Maritime and Offshore Facilities Security Act 2003 will toughen access to airports and seaports for persons with serious or organised crime convictions.

Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester said the measures will enhance the aviation and maritime security identification card (ASIC and MSIC) schemes, which are an important part of securing Australia's aviation and maritime infrastructure.

"This Government has no higher priority than keeping Australians safe and secure. These changes will strengthen our ability to protect Australia's airports and seaports from individuals with links to serious or organised crime. In turn this will help keep drugs off our streets and illegal guns out of our communities," said Mr Chester.

"These changes will also deliver on our commitment to implement the National Ice Taskforce's recommendations, specifically to strengthen the ASIC and MSIC schemes to disrupt the distribution of ice."

"Successful passage of these changes will ensure the earliest possible commencement of these important measures."

Supporting the amendments, the Minister for Justice and the Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Counter-Terrorism Michael Keenan said the changes will improve the Government's ability to combat transnational and domestic organised crime.

"Organised crime is a serious threat to our security and prosperity as a nation. The Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission conservatively estimates that organised crimes costs Australia $36 billion annually," Mr Keenan said.

"Crooks are more sophisticated than ever before, and we need to be smarter and more targeted in our efforts to detect, disrupt and undermine the misery they peddle."

"It is known that organised criminal groups exploit weaknesses in the ASIC and MSIC schemes to their benefit. These changes will address this issue and are a critical step in securing our airport and seaports from criminal influence."

On successful passage, it is intended that the reforms will become effective from 1 February 2017.

More information:

Fair Work Ombudsman Compliance Audits

The Fair Work Ombudsman has released the findings of recent checks on the record-keeping practices of business throughout Australia.

Almost 1400 employers were audited in every State and Territory.

Spot checks of 1376 businesses found that 988, or 72 per cent, were compliant with their record-keeping and pay-slip obligations.

However, 46 employers were asked to back-pay a total of $620,023 to 336 of their workers who had been short-changed.

Two businesses received a Letter of Caution, putting them on notice that future breaches of workplace laws could result in enforcement action.

Records and Resources Campaign Report

New Biometrics system to fight crime

The Federal Government has announced a new $52 million system to replace the National Automated Fingerprint Identification System (NAFIS) in 2017 – the only national capability that provides police agencies with access to fingerprint data.

Modern day threats demand agile IT capability that delivers greater and quicker collection of evidence, which can then be accessed nationwide.

This new innovation gives law enforcement agencies fast and reliable access to not only finger prints, but palm prints and facial images. Ultimately our police across the nation will be able to undertake facial recognition matching with the 12 million images already held nationally in police databases.

The Biometric Identification System (BIS) will not only integrate with existing law enforcement systems, but advance as our nation’s biometric capability advances. This is vital in the current national security landscape, because it is essential to have robust and efficient cross-border information sharing to support the law enforcement agencies that protect our communities.  Read More>

Australian National Security

Along with other risks, such as accidents or natural disasters, the possibility of a terrorist attack should be considered as part of a business' risk management plan.

Businesses can minimise the impact of terrorism by having adequate risk management and business continuity plans in place. These plans need to consider physical security, information security and personnel security.

The Good Security—Good Business booklet aims to raise awareness about risk management and business continuity amongst small and medium sized enterprises.

Chemical security—Take action to prevent the chemicals that you use, sell or handle from being used by terrorists to make homemade explosives.

Critical infrastructure resilience—Find out about the mechanisms in place to protect Australia’s critical infrastructure, including the Trusted Information Sharing Network, which helps business and government share information on critical infrastructure vulnerabilities and ways to assess and reduce risk.

Terrorism financing—Safeguard your business against providing financial support to a terrorist individual, organisation or act.

www.nationalsecurity.gov.au