Privacy guidelines - working from home

The University complies with the requirements the Privacy and Personal Information Protection Act 1998 (NSW) and the Health Records and Information Privacy Act 2002 as detailed in the Privacy Management Plan.

To support your compliance with the Privacy obligations as you transition to working from home detailed below are some guidelines for maintaining confidentiality of the University records.

1. Keep paper documents and portable devices securely stored

Where possible, only take home portable devices and paper documents that are necessary to support your effective working operations. Retain this information in a secure location when not in use. If a locked space is not available, ensure the documents are placed in a drawer or area not readily accessible by unauthorised persons. Keep secure when in transit.

Seek approval from your manager if unsure.

2. Safeguarding Computer Data and Privacy

Ensure the device you are remotely working from has the applicable University security safeguards such as firewalls and antivirus software in place to maintain cybersecurity to protect yourself and the University from potential hackers. Please refer to the IT Services Support Services page for their guide on technology and working from home.

When working on your device at home, ensure documents and emails are not visible by others, lock your device on leaving it unattended and keep it in a secure place when not in use.

3. Telephone conversations

Be mindful of confidential and sensitive phone conversations when working from home. Confidential conversations should be held in areas of your home where there is little interruption or risk of inadvertent disclosure. Where practicable use the Jabber (VOIP softphone) technology offered by IT Services.

4. Working in a public area or different region of the campus

Do not use public Wi-Fi when accessing confidential or sensitive University documentation from your device. Use only reliable and secure Wi-Fi from your home or the University. VPN has been provided to all staff working from home.

5. Responding to a security breach

If you suspect your device or data has been accessed by an unauthorised party, or if you lose your device, contact your line manager and the Privacy Team at privacy@newcastle.edu.au immediately.

Maintaining confidentiality, privacy and security of personal, sensitive and University protected information is of importance. Please be mindful of your obligations in respect to your responsibilities whilst working from home.

The Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner has provided useful information and tips for Government employees working from home in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.