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Privacy Policy

General Privacy Statement - Our Privacy Assurance to you

At the Australian Association of Social Workers ("AASW") your privacy has always been important to us. The AASW is covered by the National Privacy Principles established under the Privacy Act 1988 (Act) as well as our existing obligations of confidentiality.

The AASW takes the privacy of users seriously and seeks to comply with all elements of the National Privacy Principles in its conduct.

The AASW privacy policy explains how we collect personal information and how we maintain, use and disclose that information. It also provides some detail about your privacy rights along with our general rights and obligations and our policy in relation to the personal information we keep on record.

When you apply for membership, a product or service, the application form includes notices about privacy and requests for consent. Those privacy notices (called privacy statements) specify in more detail how any information about you may be used and disclosed in relation to the particular product or service.

When you apply for membership or use one of our products or services, you consent to us collecting, maintaining, using and disclosing personal information about you and provided by you or by another person in accordance with the privacy statement in the application form and this privacy policy, as amended from time to time.

Members consent to the AASW providing the public with the name, state and membership status of members through the search function on the AASW website Members may also choose to participate in the advanced search function that provides the public with additional details about self employed social workers.
We value your comments and opinions. If you have questions or require further information about our privacy policy please contact us via:

Tel: +61 2 6232 3900 or freecall 1800 630 124 (Australia only)
Post: PO Box 4956 Kingston ACT 2604 Australia

We also suggest you obtain a copy of “Your Privacy and the National Privacy Principles "My Privacy My Choice” from the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner.

Online Privacy Statement - Our Privacy Assurance to you

At the AASW your privacy has always been important to us. The AASW is covered by the National Privacy Principles as well as our existing obligations of confidentiality.

  1. The AASW takes the privacy of users of its websites seriously and seeks to comply with all elements of the National Privacy Principles in its online conduct.
  2. When you visit our websites, our Internet service provider makes a record of the visits and logs information for statistical purposes.
  3. No attempt will be made to identify users or their browsing activities except as required by a law enforcement agency exercising a warrant to inspect the service provider’s logs.
  4. The AASW may use "cookies" to enhance the functionality of the website. However, cookies are not used to record any personal information (eg: name, address, email address.)
  5. We will only record your email address or other personal details if you send us a message (eg: requesting a service, completing a survey, etc.). It will only be used for the purpose for which you have provided it to the AASW and will not be added to a mailing list unless you have consented to this. We will not use your email address for any other purpose, and subject to paragraph 6 will not disclose it, without your consent.
  6. Where an AASW website is produced in conjunction with a third party ("AASW Partner"), personal information submitted to that website may be recorded by either AASW or the AASW Partner. However, the AASW imposes contractual restrictions equivalent to those imposed on the AASW by the Act in respect of collection and use of personal information by such third parties.
  7. This privacy policy does not apply to parties that may be linked or associated with our website. Those website owners are responsible for the privacy of the information they collect and should be contacted directly for details of their privacy policies.
  8. The AASW appreciates that some people may not wish to submit information via email or the Internet. If you do not wish to submit personal information to the AASW through our National or various branch websites or via email, you can write to the AASW at:

Australian Association of Social Workers
PO Box 4956
Kingston ACT 2604

What we collect

On some AASW websites, you can order products or services, make information requests, subscribe to marketing or support materials, or register yourself or your AASW products, services or events. The types of personal information you provide to us on these pages may include name, address, phone, email address, user IDs and passwords, billing information, transaction, credit card information and contact preferences.

Personal information means information or an opinion (including information or an opinion forming part of a database), whether true or not, and whether recorded in a material form or not, about an individual whose identity is apparent, or can reasonably be ascertained, from the information or opinion.

To personalize our web sites, services or communications and improve our products and services, we may also ask you to provide us with information regarding your personal or professional interests, demographics, and experiences with our products or services.

Anonymous (non-personal) data we collect may include the pages visited on, unique URLs visited within, browser type and IP address. Most anonymous data is collected via cookies or other analysis technologies. web pages use cookies, web beacons and other technologies for data analysis and personalization services. The AASW places ads on other web sites that may use cookies.

The AASW does not knowingly collect information from children under the age of 16 and the AASW’s products and services do not target information to children under 16. The AASW is committed to protecting the privacy needs of children and we encourage parents to take an active role in your child's online activities and interests.

What personal information does the AASW hold about you


Our information includes details that identify you including:

  • name
  • personal descriptive information (title, DOB, gender)
  • employment and practice experience information
  • direct contact (phone, fax, email) and address information
  • academic and CPD (Continuing Professional Development) information
  • financial information related to membership fee payments, other payments for goods and services and bank account details if you participate in Direct Debit payments for membership fees.

During your membership with the Association, you may participate in a number of surveys conducted by the Association as part of its routine operations or surveys conducted by the Association on behalf of other organisations that are consistent with the Association’s professional development and representation and its corporate philosophy. The AASW allows all members and customers to opt out of participation.

In certain surveys where you can be identified with your response, your personal identifying details will be masked and held separately from your responses for the purposes of analysis and reporting.

From time to time other bodies may request detailed statistical information on the construct and activities of the Association, in these instances all information provided is de�identified.


Our information includes:

  • name
  • direct contact [phone, fax, email] and address information
  • financial information related to payments for goods and services.

Disclosing your information and its consequences

The AASW will not sell, rent or lease your personal information to unrelated third party companies. Some AASW services are linked with those from other unrelated third party companies, some which offer you the option to share personal data you give with both the AASW and the third party. Examples include conference registrations offered by other professional associations that are represented on the AASW’s websites. We will not share your personal information.

Your authority

By continuing to be a member or customer providing personal contact information required by the Association for such transactions (eg. Applying/renewing membership or requesting a service by or on behalf of the Association), you consent to the Association maintaining, using and disclosing your information as set out in this privacy policy.

The AASW uses personal information to better understand your needs and interest and provide you with better service.. We take seriously the trust you place in us. The AASW will not sell, rent or lease your personale information to others.

AASW online Membership management provides individual members with direct access to their personal membership data for review/update. Online Customer registration makes it easy for non-members and the general public requiring services/products to create or edit their personal contact information and privacy preferences.

This privacy statement covers personal information, anonymous data collection and aggregate reporting.. Anonymous (nonpersonal) information is data about usage and service operation, reported in aggregate, which is not associated to a specific personal identity. Aggregate information is data collected and summarized for a broad category of members and customers or AASW services.

Depending on the product or service being provided to you, personal information may be disclosed to:

  • anyone acting on your behalf (eg. a solicitor or accountant) – unless you tell the AASW not to. This could also include referees, any financial institution nominated by you (for example in a direct debit) or anyone else you request.

Access to your information

You can request access to your personal information that is kept on record. If you believe that any information is incorrect or outdated, you may update that information online or of course ask for a correction to be made by AASW staff.

You can request access at any time to personal information we hold about you. We will process your request within a reasonable time, usually 14 days for a straightforward request. More time may be needed, depending on the nature of the request.

There is no fee for requesting access to your information, however we may charge you the reasonable cost of processing your request.

Sometimes we are not required to provide you with access, for example, if the law says we can deny access. If we refuse you access to your personal information, we will tell you the reason why. If we are not required to provide you with access to the information requested, we will consider, if reasonable, whether the use of a mutually agreed intermediary would allow sufficient access to meet your needs and ours.

How we use it

Personal information provided to the AASW is used:

  • To build and maintain a national association membership
  • To provide the public with details about members and self employed social workers through AASW website search functions
  • To provide you with information or to ask you to participate in surveys about products, services, news and events. We will give you the opportunity to optout of market research and customer surveys
  • To allow you to purchase products and services
  • To provide you with advertising, promotions and special offers we feel you may be interested in
  • To inform you of new products
  • To provide you with content, services and instructions based on your language preferences, postal code and regional locations, etc.
  • To better understand on an aggregated basis how our products and services are used, traffic patterns and what types of content are most popular with users of our products and services
  • To efficiently manage and administer all products and services provided by the Association
  • To ensure the Association’s internal business operations operate normally
  • To fulfill all legal requirements

Credit card information is used only for payment processing and fraud prevention, and is not used for other purposes.

Data collected online may also be combined with information you provide through other sources such as product registration, call centers or public events such as trade shows or seminars.

Anonymous (non-personal) data is aggregated for reporting about web site usability, performance, and effectiveness. It is used to improve the customer experience, usability and site content.

AASW website search functions

The search functions on the AASW website enable the public to:

  • locate the name, state and membership status of members ; and
  • for an advanced search, locate the address and contact details and services provided by self employed social workers. Members may choose to participate in the advanced search function.

With whom we share it

The AASW will not sell, rent, or lease your personally identifiable information to others. The AASW will not share your personal information with a business partner or any unrelated third party company unless you give your permission. Your permission will be requested when you submit your information. The AASW shares member and customer information across AASW business entities within the usage limits described above in "How we use it".

The AASW contracts with third party service providers and suppliers to provide complete products and services "How we use it". These suppliers and service providers who may in some circumstances be located overseas in jurisdictions which lack the same statutory privacy and data protection controls which exist in Australia, act on the AASW's behalf and are bound to the AASW privacy policy contractually through AASW confidentiality and personal data protection agreements. Suppliers and service providers are required to keep confidential the information received on behalf of the AASW and may not use it for any purpose other than to carry out the services they are performing for the AASW. These service providers may change or we may contract with additional service providers in order to provide new services. The AASW will not share personal information with any other third parties without your permission unless required by law enforcement action or subpoena.

Links from

Links provided on to third party websites are provided as a convenience and the AASW does not control those sites or their privacy practices, which may differ from ours. The AASW does not endorse or make any representations about them. We encourage you to review the privacy policy of any company before submitting your personal information. The personal data you choose to give to unrelated third parties is covered by their privacy policies, not the AASW Privacy Policy. Some thirdparty companies may choose to share their personal data with the AASW; that sharing is governed by that third party company's privacy policy.

How we collect your information

Your choice

Members/customers can subscribe to receive some product and association specific information and AASW-wide marketing communications. AASW-wide communications may include new product information, special offers or possibly an invitation to participate in market research.

We give you a choice regarding AASW-wide communications by postal mail and email.

For non-member customers, the AASW online Customer Registration makes it easy to create or edit your personal contact information and privacy preferences. This option does not apply to communications for the purpose of administering order completion or event updates.

Onward transfer

Personal data given to the AASW may be transferred across state and country borders for the purposes of data consolidation, storage and simplified customer information management. The practices which govern this data movement are described in our commitments in the Choice and Security sections of this privacy policy.

Access & accuracy

The AASW strives to keep your personal information accurate. We have put in place managerial data standards review processes and technological tools to maintain customer data accuracy. We will provide you with access to view and change your information, including making every effort to provide you with online access. To protect your privacy and security, we will also take reasonable steps to verify your identity, such as a password and user ID, before granting access to your data. Certain areas of the AASW's web sites may limit access to specific individuals through the use of passwords and other personal identifiers.

The most effective way to view and change your personal information is to return to the web page where you originally submitted your data and follow the instructions on that web page or send us a message as described in "Contacting us" below. Data access is also available upon request.


A cookie is an electronic token that is passed to your browser and your browser passes it back to the server whenever a page is sent to you.

One use of ‘cookies’ is to keep track of the pages you have accessed while using our server. The cookie allows you to page back and forwards through the web site and return to pages you have already visited. The cookie exists only for the time you are accessing our server.

The AASW uses browser cookies to accomplish the personalisation and premium content rights management described above. These cookies are read only by the AASW and are transmitted from web browsers and the client to servers maintained by the AASW and the contract service providing access to the National Membership database .

Some web pages and HTML-formatted email newsletters MAY use web beacons in conjunction with cookies to compile aggregate statistics about web site usage. A web beacon is an electronic image, called a single-pixel (1x1), or clear GIF. You may render web beacons unusable by rejecting their associated cookies. This data is not personally identifiable or linked to personally identifiable information.

Users may disable cookies however, disabling cookies has the following effect:

  • you may be required to sign in with your user name and password every time you wish to access premium content, services, and features;
  • some product features, which require cookies to function, may be disabled.

Most browsers automatically accept cookies, but you can usually refuse cookies or selectively accept certain cookies by adjusting the preferences in your browser. If you turn off cookies, there may some features of our site that will not be available to you and some web pages may not display properly. You can find information on popular browsers and how to adjust your cookie preferences at the following website:

Microsoft Internet Explorer:


The AASW is committed to ensuring the security of your information. To prevent unauthorized access or disclosure, maintain data accuracy and ensure the appropriate use of the information, the AASW has in place appropriate physical, managerial procedures to safeguard the information we collect.

We use SSL encryption when collecting or transferring sensitive data such as credit card information. Credit card numbers are only used for processing payment and are not used for other purposes. Our efforts to protect credit card fraud help protect your financial data security. As part of realtime payment processing, the AASW subscribes to a fraud management service. This service gives you and the AASW an extra level of protection to guard against credit card fraud.

Communications security

As many computing systems make use of telecommunications networks, security of computing and communications are increasingly interrelated. There are two major kinds of communication risks the AASW considers a high priority for reducing:

  • interception of transmissions; and
  • unauthorised intrusion into networks. Transmission of information over insecure telecommunications lines, which are vulnerable to interception.

Protection of personal information by the AASW includes:

  • checking facsimile numbers before sending personal information, and confirming receipt;
  • the use of PIN numbers and passwords for secure website transactions
  • checking identity before giving out personal information over the telephone; and
  • encryption of data for high risk transmissions.

The AASW is developing a ‘best practice’ approach to computer and network security that includes:

  • virus detection software, firewalls, routers, network intrusion detection systems, host intrusion detection systems, appropriate encryption and expert monitoring and ‘spot audits’.

Unauthorised intrusion into computer networks not only jeopardises the confidentiality of information; it can also threaten network integrity by corrupting data. The AASW employs one or a combination of the above best practice ‘tools’ where a connection to the WWW is required in order to minimise this risk.

Personnel security

Personnel security essentially refers to limiting the access to personal information to authorised staff within the organisation and ensuring that those who do have access respect the privacy of personal information that they are handling.

The AASW though administered by a small number of staff who often ‘crossâ��support’ each other’s duties, ensures access to personal and sensitive information is conducted within a ‘need to know’ principle. In general, personal/sensitive information is only accessed by those staff who need it to carry out their duties.

The AASW has an ongoing commitment to:

  • Training staff and management in security awareness, practices and procedures.
  • Developing policies on who can use particular categories of information.
  • Specifying and reviewing access privileges for shared computer drives containing personal information.

Destruction and de-identification of information

NPP 4(b) requires an organisation that no longer needs to hold personal information for any purpose to take reasonable steps to destroy or permanently de�identify the information. A legal requirement to retain the personal information is considered to be a purpose to continue holding it.

The AASW is developing criteria for retaining, destroying and de-identifying personal information with the intention of conducting periodic audits to determine old information to be destroyed or de-identified according to these procedures.


To protect individual’s privacy rights destruction needs to occur by a secure means.

For paper based records secure disposal includes:

  • shredding, pulping or disintegration of paper files; and
  • the use of an authorised disposal company for secure disposal.

For electronic records:

  • records are to be overwritten before deletion;
  • portable media containing very sensitive high risk information is ‘degaussed’3 before being destroyed and deleted from back-up files.


Permanently de-identifying information means removal of any information by which an individual may be identified from the record. Simply removing the name and address may not be sufficient to de-identify information. Permanent de-dentification also means that an organisation is not able to match the de-identified information with other records to re-establish the identity of individuals.

A form of de-dentification may occur with some surveys conducted by the Association where the identity of the individual and the individual’s response are separated but linked by an identifying number during the response collecting/data collation period. This allows the responses to be analysed and reported by a person who does not know the identification of the responder.

The test for whether information is identifiable is whether the identity of the individual is apparent, or may reasonably be ascertained, from the information using the definition of ‘personal information’ in the Privacy Act, section 6.

The AASW is putting in place:

Reasonable steps to d-identify information that include4:

  • considering the ability to identify the information;
  • the identifying nature of each aspect of the information;
  • setting safeguards that ensure that future collection or uses will not reidentify the information
  • ensuring contractual arrangements with receiving organisations such that those receiving organisations will not re-identify the information.

Contacting us:

We value your comments and opinions. We will try to answer any questions you may have, correct any error on our part or resolve any complaint that you may have about our information handling practices. If we do not resolve a complaint to your satisfaction, you also have the right to complain to the Privacy Commissioner. We will provide you with their contact details if required.

If you have comments or questions about our privacy policy please contact us:

Level 4,
33-35 Ainslie Place

PO Box 4956
Kingston ACT 2604

Phone: +61 2 6232 3900 FAX: +61 2 6230 4399
Freecall: 1800 630 124 [Australia only]

3 Demagnetisation of the medium using alternating electric currents

4 A de-identification procedure would not be complete if, from the resulting information, the identity of an individual may be reasonably ascertained.

AASW - Australian Association of Social Workers