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25.2.5 Use and disclosure


Material collected by covert surveillance is to be used in accordance with the following conditions:

a)the material is to be used only for the purpose for which the approval is given, or where exceptions under IPP 10 of the Privacy Act apply.

b)each MRCC Office must ensure that information is accurate, up to date and complete prior to the information being used. Material collected by covert surveillance must not be used in isolation but corroborated by other information to ensure accuracy.

Tests for accuracy may include:

a)identity check, i.e. name and address of surveillance subject.

b)checking timing of the surveillance procedure.

c)verifying that material collected is consistent with the nature and details of the claim e.g. musculo-skeletal injuries.

d)checking that there is not another reasonable explanation for the particular information collected such as:

  • injured worker able to lift box because he/she was wearing a splint
  • box lifted by injured worker was empty
  • activity performed by worker did not involve using injured muscles.

Material collected by covert surveillance is not to be disclosed to another person, body or agency, other than in accordance with IPP 11 of the Privacy Act (Reproduced at Attachment A). Any request for release of surveillance material either made under a Section 59 request under the SRC Act 1988 or the Freedom of Information Act, must be reported to the Director of the Policy and Procedures Section at MRCC National Office who will also make decisions regarding disclosure of material in consultation with the local MRCC Manager and our legal advisers.

When material is disclosed there must be a record of:

a)the reason(s) for disclosure

b)the recipient of the information of documents

c)the officer authorising disclosure, and

d)exactly what information or documents were disclosed.

Where material is disclosed to another person, body or agency, safeguards should be in place to ensure that the information is only disclosed by the receiving agency or person in accordance with IPP 11 of the Privacy Act.