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Using A Vehicle Gps Tracker In Australia - Surveillance Laws
As of 2020, there are no Federal Laws in Australia pertaining to the legality of GPS Trackers & Employees.
Currently, most of the states within Australia have their own Statutes which outline the legal & illegal use of these devices; only Queensland and Tasmania do not have their own statute legislation.
The formal statutes that currently exist belong to NSW, ACT, VIC & WA. It will only be a matter of time before the remaining states & territories follow in the footsteps and create this legislation
If you operate a business nationally within Australia, you will need to do your own research on how to abide by the laws, using this guide as a reference.
For example, the New South Wales Act of Surveillance legislation is a standard which you can refer to if you are based & operating out of NSW.
Each state should have their own legislation which you can refer to.
You Must Have Consent
The use of a GPS tracking device & intentional employee activity monitoring is legal only with the express, or implied consent of the person being tracked.
This consent, being either express or implied must have permission from all parties involved.
The statutes that currently exist outline that receiving express consent can be as simple as the employee being emailed that their vehicle, or person will be GPS tracked, with the same employee agreeing to the aforementioned.
The employee will need to agree to this and accept in the form of a contract or via a new policy.
On the other hand, Implied Consent could include the act of passive acceptance.
In this scenario the employee has been notified that they will be monitored, or their vehicle will be GPS tracked which can be sufficient to satisfy the needs of Implied Consent.
The notification can be in the form of a notification sticker on their vehicle stating that the vehicle is currently under surveillance.
Australian States & Territories GPS Requirements
NSW Surveillance Workplace Act
Similar to NT & ACT
• Written notice of 2 weeks.
• Two weeks’ notice needs to be provided before GPS tracking commences, as well as accompanying information
• The information that has to be provided is
- The type of surveillance that will be carried out.
- What methods are used to collect the data (ie. GPS tracker for car)
- The date and duration of the surveillance
- If the surveillance will occur indefinitely or occasionally, and when these times are.
• The vehicle that will be tracked must have signage that is visible.
• The vehicle can only be tracked during the employees working outs.
• The surveillance data must not be shared with any other parties or companies. It can only be for legitimate & lawful reasons such as a police subpoena request, threats or anything that could end in violence.
Surveillance Devices Act of WA (Year 1998)
• Each employee must consent to the installation of GPS trackers for the purpose of surveillance. The employees must consent. Violation can be up to $5000 AUD.
• Conversations that are private cannot be recorded, whether intentional or unintentional. This includes both video and audio.
Devices Surveillance Act (Year 1999)
• Consent must be given by the Employee in either method of express or implied.
• Data from GPS tracking & surveillance must not be provided to any other parties. The only scenario when it is lawful is for the lawful business of the employer.
Within Australia it is possible to use a GPS vehicle tracker for surveillance, so long as you have followed the lawful ways in which it takes to carry out surveillance.
Each Australian states has it’s own set of legislation & laws, so you will need to do your own research to see what is possible.
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