2009 Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission

Privacy Policy

Please note: this is the 2009 Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission’s privacy statement and policy.

Web site privacy statement

The State Government of Victoria is committed to protecting the information it collects and uses by compliance with its obligations under the Information Privacy Act 2000 (Vic). While the 2009 Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission is exempt from the Information Privacy Act, it nevertheless values the privacy of every individual's personal information. This web site Privacy Statement applies to this web site which is operated by the 2009 Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission under the domain name www.royalcommission.vic.gov.au ('web site'). It does not relate to the confidentiality of any submission you may make to the 2009 Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission. Any requests that a submission be accepted on a confidential basis will be considered on a case by case basis. This Web site Privacy Statement explains how your personal information (being information capable of identifying you as an individual) will be treated as you access and interact with this web site. The practices outlined in this Web site Privacy Statement are subject to any rights we may have to handle personal information in accordance with law.

Collection of your personal information

The personal information we collect via this web site includes:

  • the content of any electronic forms you submit via this website, such as for the lodging of submissions or subscription to email alert services.

  • any messages or comments you submit to us via this website or to email addresses displayed on this web site, which may include personal information such as name, email address and telephone number.

While you can browse this web site anonymously, without disclosing your personal information, we may not be able to provide the full range of services through this web site if we are not provided with the information outlined above.

When you provide us with personal information about other individuals, we rely on you to make them aware:

  • that such information will or may be provided to the 2009 Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission

  • of the types of third parties we may provide it to

  • of the relevant purposes that we and such third parties will use it for

  • how they can access it.

Use and disclosure of your personal information

In addition to receiving and considering information that you provide to us, and responding to your requests, we may use or disclose personal information that we collect about you for the conduct of the 2009 Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission.

  • We may also disclose personal information that we collect about you for purposes including the following

  • for purposes connected with the operation, administration, development or enhancement of this web site

  • where we suspect that fraud or unlawful activity has been, is being or may be engaged in

  • any other purposes required or authorised by law.

We may share personal information with third parties. The types of third parties to whom we may disclose that personal information include our service providers who assist us in providing this web site and our products and services such as organisations who provide archival, auditing, professional advisory, mailhouse, delivery, call centre, technology, research, utility and security services. We may also disclose your personal information to third parties acting on your behalf, for example your solicitor or interpreter.


We have implemented technology and security policies, rules and measures to protect the personal information that we have under our control. However, you should be aware that there are risks in transmitting information across the internet. So while we strive to protect such information, we cannot ensure or warrant the security of any information transmitted to us online and individuals do so at their own risk. Once any personal information comes into our possession, we will take reasonable steps to protect that information from misuse and loss and from unauthorised access, modification and disclosure. If you are concerned about conveying sensitive material to us over the internet, you might prefer to contact us by telephone or mail.

Electronic forms and email

We may preserve the content of any forms you complete or emails or other electronic messages that we receive. Any personal information contained in that message will only be used or disclosed in ways set out in the web pages themselves or in accordance with this web site Privacy Statement.

Links to external web sites

This Website Privacy Statement does not extend beyond this web site. When following links to other sites from this website, we recommend that you read the privacy statement of that site to familiarise yourself with its privacy practices.


Like many sites, this web site may use cookies from time to time.

Cookies are small data files that a website is able to place on a user's hard drive to record aspects of that user's experience of the web site. For example, we may use cookies to record that a user visited a particular section of the web site, that their browsing software was a particular version or to ensure that online applications and transactions do not require you to re-input information when moving between web pages. In this way, cookies can improve the operation of the web site, and make the experience more efficient, more enjoyable or more personalised. Importantly, in depositing information on a user's computer and referring to it later in the same session (sessional) or on a subsequent visit (persistent), cookies do not need to identify the user or record any personal information.

The default settings of browsers like Netscape and Internet Explorer may allow some or all cookies, but users can easily take steps to erase cookies from their hard-drive, block all cookies, or receive a warning before a cookie is stored. However, some parts of sites may not function fully for users that disallow cookies.

Web statistics data collection

Pages on the site may be coded with Google Analytics code. This is not apparent to the user, as the code makes use of an invisible image at the bottom of the web page. This software stores a cookie in your browser, which contains a unique identifier, and sends information to Google. This enables Google to track the number of unique visitors to the site. In no way does this unique identifier identify a user personally. We do not and will not marry any data collected by Google with any personal information.

Web beacons

This web site uses web beacons, also known as web bugs, pixel tags or clear GIFs, as some pages on the site are coded with Nielsen//NetRatings software (see further information above under collection).

Used in combination with cookies, a web beacon is an often-transparent graphic image, usually no larger than 1 pixel x 1 pixel, that is placed on a site or in an email that is used to monitor the behaviour of the user visiting the site or receiving the email.

When the HTML code for the web beacon points to a site to retrieve the image, at the same time it can pass along information such as:

  • the IP address of the computer that retrieved the image

  • the time the web beacon was viewed and for how long

  • the type of browser that retrieved the image

  • previously set cookie values.

Web beacons are typically used by a third party to monitor the activity of a site.

If you have concerns about web beacons, turning off the browser's cookies will prevent web beacons from tracking your activity. The web beacon will still account for an anonymous visit, but your unique information will not be recorded.

Access and correction

To request access to or correction of your personal information held by the 2009 Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission, please contact us to find out about access and correction procedures.

Terms of Reference

Download Terms of Reference (PDF, 389kb)

Practice Notes

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Opening Remarks

Download Opening Remarks

Closing Remarks

Download Closing Remarks