The GE Companies* ("we" / "us"/ "our") take our obligations to protect personal information seriously. We are bound by the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) and the Australian Privacy Principles ("APPs") (together, "the Privacy Act").
- the kinds of personal information that we collect and hold about you;
- how we collect your personal information;
- how we hold your personal information;
- the purposes for collecting, holding, using and disclosing your personal information;
- how you may access your personal information held by us and correct that information where it is incorrect;
- how you may make a complaint about the way we collect, hold, use or disclose personal information, and how we will deal with Privacy related complaints;
- whether we will (or are likely to) disclose your personal information to overseas recipients and the countries where such recipients may be located.
You may interact with us anonymously or by using a pseudonym if the interaction is general in nature. However, if the interaction is specific to an account or relates to your personal information we will need to identify you before we can engage in further discussions and correspondence.
This Policy will be kept up to date and published on the Australian GE Capital websites.
The kinds of personal information we collect and hold about you
As a group of companies offering a wide range of products and services, we collect and hold personal information about you. We collect information from our customers, prospective customers, prospective employees, contractors, suppliers, brokers, introducers, merchants, agents, service providers and the people who represent the businesses we deal with.
The type of personal information we collect and hold may vary depending on the nature of our interactions with you. For example, our businesses will collect identification information, transaction / repayment history information, banking details and employment information.
All of our businesses will collect and hold name and contact information of any individuals they deal with.
In order to satisfy our legal obligations, we may need to retain your information after a transaction or a relationship has ended. However, we will not retain your identifiable personal information longer than is reasonably necessary and permitted under Australian law.
Some elements of personal information are also referred to as sensitive information, these include:
- racial or ethnic origin;
- political opinions;
- membership of a political association;
- religious beliefs or affiliations;
- philosophical beliefs;
- membership of a professional or trade association or union membership;
- sexual orientation or practices;
- criminal history;
- health information;
- genetic information;
- biometric information; or
- biometric templates.
We will only collect sensitive information with your consent or when permissible under Australian law and will only use this information for a legitimate purpose where this is reasonably necessary.
How we collect your personal information
Wherever it is possible and practical to do so, we will collect personal information directly from you, this may be in person, over the telephone, by mail, over the internet, by e-mail or fax, or by completion of a form (such as an application form).
We may also collect your personal information from a third party. This will be limited to circumstances where it is impracticable or unreasonable for us to collect it directly from you. The type of third party who might provide information to us will vary depending on the nature of the business and interaction with you.
Whilst this is not an exhaustive list, all businesses may obtain your personal information from other third parties which could be:
- someone authorised to act on your behalf (e.g. financial adviser, executor, administrator, trustee, guardian, attorney, accountant or consumer advocate);
- recruitment consultants (e.g. for job applicants);
- an introducer such as a broker, agent, dealer and retail partners;
- third party service providers and / or suppliers;
- parties to whom your debts have been assigned; or
- one or more of our related companies, in Australia or overseas.
How we hold your personal information
We understand the importance of protecting the personal information we hold about you. We take steps to ensure your personal information is free from misuse, interference, loss, unauthorised access or modification by:
- securing all personal information;
- limiting access to personal information only to those that need access; and
- protecting our systems with appropriate technology solutions.
The purposes for collecting, holding, using and disclosing your personal information
We collect, hold, use and disclose your personal information in order to manage and administer the products and / or services we provide to our customers, whether they are individuals or businesses. You may be a customer, contractor, job applicant, supplier, partner or party with whom we do or have done business, or may do business with in the future.
As a financial services provider a major purpose for which we hold, use or disclose personal information is to assess credit applications, manage credit and insurance agreements, for planning, product and service development, research purposes and to analyse the risk profiles of our customers or potential customers.
Online servicing or access
When you register to access products or services online, the information collected is compared with the details we may already have stored, this might include your name and date of birth. This allows us to verify who is seeking access. If this information is not provided, you will not be able to access your personal information online.
How you may access your personal information held by us and correct that information where it is incorrect
You are entitled to access the information we hold about you. Simple requests are best handled by speaking to the relevant customer service area. More complex requests may be better detailed in writing to ensure we fully understand and are able to respond accurately to your request. You can contact us in writing at Attn: GE Capital Compliance, 572 Swan Street, Richmond, VIC 3121.
If there is a reason we are unable to agree to a request for access to your personal information we will advise you of this in writing. Some examples of why we may refuse a request for access include, where providing the information:
- may pose a threat to the health or safety of an individual or the public;
- may have an unreasonable impact on the privacy of another individual;
- is not allowed by law; or
- may reveal internal information relating to a commercially sensitive decision making process.
If information we hold about you is incorrect we would like to know so that we can promptly correct this. You can contact us in writing at Attn: GE Capital Compliance, 572 Swan Street, Richmond, VIC 3121.
In certain situations, we may not agree to a request to correct information we hold about you, if this occurs we will advise you of this and our reason for not agreeing to the correction request.
How you may make a complaint about the way we collect, hold, use or disclose personal information and how we will deal with Privacy related complaints
If you want to make a complaint about our handling of personal information we ask that you contact us first. We will then follow our Internal Dispute Resolution (IDR) process. You can contact us in writing at Attn: GE Capital Compliance, 572 Swan Street, Richmond, VIC 3121. If the entity your complaint relates to is a member of an external dispute resolution scheme we will advise you of this when we deal with you complaint and provide information on pursuing the complaint externally.
You may also refer the matter to the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (the "OAIC"). The contact details for the OAIC are:The Office of the Australian Information Commissioner
GPO Box 2999
Canberra ACT 2601
Phone: 1300 363 992
Fax: 02 9284 9666
Who we may disclose personal information to
In order for the GE Companies to best provide our products and services to our customers, from time to time, we share personal information with our related bodies corporate, as defined in the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth).
We may also disclose personal information to non-GE businesses who provide various services to us. We require all of these businesses and our suppliers to comply with strict confidentiality requirements and the APPs. If you are our customer (or a representative of a customer) there is additional information about our disclosure of customer specific personal information in the product Privacy Notice.
When we may disclose personal information to overseas recipients and the countries where such recipients may be located
As is the case throughout the Australian financial services industry (and other major industries), technology allows for services to be provided by different service providers including some that are located overseas.
We utilise overseas service providers for some of our activities and to do so we may need to disclose personal information to those service providers. We will only disclose this information where permitted by the Privacy Act and Australian Privacy Law. Those countries we may disclose information to may include China, Hungary, India, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand, Philippines, Poland, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, United Kingdom and the United States of America.
Tracking information on the web
For statistical purposes, we collect information on website activity such as the number of users who visit our websites, the date and time of visits, the number of pages viewed, navigation patterns, what country and what systems users have used to access the site and, when entering one of our websites from another website, the address of that website. This information is obtained through the use of 'cookies' (refer below for more information about 'cookies').
Our websites may also contain links to non-GE websites. While these links are provided for convenience, if you are navigating these sites please be aware that the information handling practices of the linked websites may differ from ours. While we try to link only to sites that share our high standards and respect for privacy, we are not able to guarantee the privacy practices of other websites.
Whenever personal information is sent via our website we use high security levels to protect it. These security levels are standard for internet banking and large scale e-commerce sites and involve the use of 128-bit encryption. The security level of a web page can be viewed by clicking on the internet browser's padlock or key icon.
A 'cookie' is a packet of information that allows a website to identify and interact more effectively with a computer. Cookies do not identify you, but they do identify your browser type and Internet Service Provider.
Your browser can be individually set to accept all cookies, reject all cookies, or notify when a cookie is sent. If cookies are rejected, there may be limits on how our websites can be used. To evaluate the effectiveness of our website advertising, we may use third parties to collect statistical data. No personal data is collected on these occasions.
It is important to remember that a browser can be set to reject cookies.
*The GE Companies in Australia include:
- Commercial Distribution Finance Pty Ltd (ABN 54 608 590 727)
- GE SPA Leasing Pty (ABN 75 095 668 036)
- GEL Custodians Pty Ltd (ABN 40 118 374 155
- GE Mortgage Solutions Ltd (ABN 85 070 797 894)
- GE Finance Australasia Pty Ltd (ABN 000 015 485) (formerly known as Australian Guarantee Corporation Limited)
- Avco Access Pty Ltd (ABN 93 000 032 075)