After the upcoming federal elections, consultations on a new draft legislation on privacy will begin in the second half of the year in Australia. The Australian government is currently considering increasing penalties for privacy breaches within the Privacy Act. According to Zdnet, maximum penalties could be increased substantially, up to AU$10 million.
Privacy and data protection are two interrelated Internet governance issues. Data protection is a legal mechanism that ensures privacy. Privacy is usually defined as the right of any citizen to control their own personal information and to decide about it (to disclose information or not). Privacy is a fundamental human right. It is recognised in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and in many other international and regional human rights conventions. The July 2015 appointment of the first UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Privacy in the Digital Age reflects the rising importance of privacy in global digital policy, and the recognition of the need to address privacy rights issues the the global, as well as national levels.