web analytics

Win for sanity in Hager vs Westpac

Written By: - Date published: 1:29 pm, February 21st, 2017 - 29 comments
Categories: business, Dirty Politics, human rights, law - Tags: , , , ,

A win for both Nicky Hager and sanity:

Westpac’s failed claim: Customers have signed away their rights to privacy

The privacy of banking information is in the spotlight after Westpac told the Privacy Commission it did not need any legal order before handing over customers’ personal banking details to police.

Westpac claimed it got the power to do so when customers signed the bank’s “terms and conditions” – a move it claimed voided customers’ rights.

It was an argument unsuccessfully made by the bank in its attempt to defend itself over the disclosure of Nicky Hager’s details to police investigating his Dirty Politics book.

In a decision released today, the Privacy Commission expressed doubt in its ruling that the bank could actually hold a “well-founded belief” that its customers had signed away their rights.

In the ruling, Privacy Commissioner John Edwards said Westpac “believes that every customer has authorised the disclosure of all of their information from each of their accounts to Police for whatever reason Police give” even without a search warrant or other legal order.

“I simply cannot accept that is a well-founded belief. As a general proposition it seems untenable that Westpac would genuinely hold this belief.

“I am sure it would come as a surprise to a great many of Westpac’s customers that this were so.” …

Press release from Hager’s lawer Felix Geiringer is here.

29 comments on “Win for sanity in Hager vs Westpac ”

  1. One Anonymous Bloke 1

    That fraud allegation deserves criminal charges. Crimes Act S.111

    False statements or declarations
    Every one is liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 3 years who, on any occasion on which he is required or permitted by law to make any statement or declaration before any officer or person authorised by law to take or receive it, or before any notary public to be certified by him as such notary, makes a statement or declaration that would amount to perjury if made on oath in a judicial proceeding.

    • McFlock 1.1

      what fraud allegation?

      edit – ah in the linked press release. Cops lied to get the bank to give them the information and falsely said Hager was being investigated for fraud.

      That’s fucked up

      • One Anonymous Bloke 1.1.1

        From Geiringer’s press release:

        The Police did not have a warrant or production order for that information. Police falsely said that Mr Hager was being investigated for fraud.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 1.1.2

        From Fisher’s story:

        In the case of one bank, an executive said the police requests were used as an early warning system for the bank to protect itself against customers who might be in trouble with the law.

        How many false statements have been made exactly, and how many people have had banking “problems” as a consequence?

        If the banks want to regain people’s trust after this, they’ll need to pro-actively compensate everyone they’ve committed privacy offences against, without having to be asked.

        How the cops regain trust is beyond me. Prosecutions would be a good start.

  2. saveNZ 2

    Good news, good post.

  3. Leftie 4

    Excellent result.

  4. Whispering Kate 5

    If the Police were allowed to get on with their jobs we wouldn’t have this disgusting state of affairs. Politics should be kept out of the policing of this country, its only when Politicians meddle and dictate to the law enforcers we get this sort of dirty stuff going on. Key was on the rampage with this one just as he was with the Kim Dot Com fiasco, he should have kept out of it and left the legal profession to do their job.

    All our Government Departments are under the thumb of their Cabinet Ministers in charge, shouldn’t there be a degree of separation and not have this threat and control all the time hovering over them. It once used to be the Church being dictated to by Kings wanting their own way – now it seems our politicians want to get into the running of these departments and literally making a God damn mess of things while they are at it. Big Gerry is an example of making a pig’s dinner of everything he touches and Paula Benefit disclosed information about a beneficiary who held her to account – disgraceful and unbecoming way to act in public office.

    We are a very slender degree away from a dictatorship these days.

    • Draco T Bastard 5.1

      Politics should be kept out of the policing of this country, its only when Politicians meddle and dictate to the law enforcers we get this sort of dirty stuff going on.

      Politics should be kept out of policing but that doesn’t mean that the police are clean by default.

      This raid on Hager went down fast and dirty. It may have come from the politicians but don’t think that police didn’t have a grudge after Hager outed their spy in the environmental groups.

  5. silvertuatara 6

    I note that the Kiwibank response was to not comment on their procedures over release of privacy information without statutory authorisation, but to deferred to another agency/organisation.

    I wonder how easy WINZ, the NZ Police and ACC have been able to obtain personal information from the government owned Kiwibank in regards to peoples individual banking information since 2008 when National took the reigns…would be interesting to find out. But then again does not Westpac have significant financial contracts with the NZ Government: http://www.interest.co.nz/business/77956/awarding-new-govt-banking-contracts-westpac-still-crowns-transactional-banking

    Well done Nicky Hager…..I hope that Westpac compensates Nicky Hager handsomely for their breaches of his personal privacy and human rights.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 6.1

      I am looking askance at the Privacy Commissioner:

      …he would not put the case forward for prosecution by the Human Rights Tribunal because Hager had legal representatives who could take that step.

      Aka: the market will provide. All hail market.

      OAB’s alternative statement for the Privacy Commissioner:

      …he would have initiated proceedings were it not for deliberate National Party underfunding, which has now undermined the office to the extent that it can no longer perform its duties. No further comment can be budgeted for in these circumstances.

    • Tophat 6.2

      They just ask Kiwibank.
      It’s a simple note asking for all information pertaining to accounts that are associated with a certain name. Not a form or anything and no explanation why the information is being released or on what authority.

  6. Michael 7

    “A win that should not have been unnecessary”. It should not be necessary for me to tell you that you should not use double-negatives.

    • In Vino 7.1

      Rubbish. Double negatives can be used for emphasis as well as humour..
      Also, I cannot tell who you think you are replying to.

  7. michelle 8

    that is precisely why I left Westpac how dare they hand over his private stuff.
    I suppose they are appeasing the government for awarding them the government accounts. I suggest kiwis get out of that bank and go and support our kiwi banks

  8. Richard McGrath 9

    I wonder whether Hager et al would still defend privacy rights if the bank was Swiss and the customer one of the “1%”?

    • lprent 9.1

      So you think that it is OK for the police to grab data from a bank account without a a warrant or even a production order?

      And here I was thinking that libertarians had a problem with the state doing that. Well scratch a libertarian and you’ll usually find that veneer of ‘ethics’ gets removed to reveal an authoritarian fascist supporter of the secret police.. 😈

      • Richard McGrath 9.1.1

        Not sure how you draw those conclusions from the question I raised. I was pondering how consistent Hager and others are in their opinions. You are quite correct in your assertion that I would have problems with the state seizing data without a search warrant based on probable cause. You are quite mistaken in believing I would support a police state. Why on earth would you think that? Or are you being deliberately provocative?

        • One Anonymous Bloke 9.1.1.1

          pondering.

          Oh, so that’s what you were doing. And here was me thinking that you’d authored a cowardly weasel smear with no evidence other than your own dishonest prejudice,

          I’m pondering whether Dick ever defends anything other than his own bile and self-interest.

    • Chris 9.2

      That will always depend on the merits, as it did in Hager’s case. If it makes you feel better, in the situation you’ve described there’ll usually be a far greater chance the cops can establish a “well-founded belief”, so you can rest easy.

    • McFlock 9.3

      I suppose that would depend on whether there was evidence that the targeted 1%er had actually committed fraud.

      Although, given the use of a Swiss bank by a rich person, the odds would be quite high even without said evidence, but that’s seperate to the point..

      • Richard McGrath 9.3.1

        Agree McFlock, there would have to be a judge convinced of probable cause issuing a search warrant. Your second paragraph is wishful thinking.

        • McFlock 9.3.1.1

          Without being too bold, therefore, I think Hager would be cool with it in that context.

          Random cops calling a bank and saying something along the lines of “Hi, XXX is being investigated for fraud, can you email me all their banking records for the past 5 years?” without a warrant and when no such investigation is taking place, Hager seems to be against that.

          Has your question been answered?

      • Chris 9.3.2

        “Although, given the use of a Swiss bank by a rich person, the odds would be quite high even without said evidence, but that’s seperate to the point.”

        No, that is precisely my point!

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • New record number of homes consented
    In the year ended June 2021, the actual number of new dwellings consented was 44,299, up 18 percent from the June 2020 year. In June 2021, the seasonally adjusted number of new dwellings consented rose 3.8 percent. In June 2021, 4,310 new dwellings were consented, an increase of 3.8 per ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    19 hours ago
  • Communities backed to tackle wilding pines
    Twelve community projects across New Zealand will receive a share of $2 million to carry out wilding pine control, Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor announced as part of Biosecurity Week. “Wilding pines are a serious problem that threaten many of the unique landscapes that New Zealanders value. Community groups and trusts ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    20 hours ago
  • Health Minister Andrew Little responding to the New Zealand Nurses Organisation's rejection of ...
    I was advised last night that the result of the ballot of Tōpūtanga Tapuhi Kaitiaki o Aotearoa New Zealand Nurses Organisation members have rejected the latest proposal to settle their collective agreement. Let me be clear: the proposal was one they put to the Government. The Nurses Organisation rejected their ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    21 hours ago
  • Conversion Practices Prohibition Legislation introduced to Parliament
    Legislation has been introduced to Parliament to protect against practices intended to change or suppress someone’s sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression. Introducing the Conversion Practices Prohibition Legislation Bill, Minister of Justice, Kris Faafoi, said the measures proposed were aimed at ending conversion practices which don’t work, are widely ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    21 hours ago
  • New school site for booming West Auckland
    The Government will build on a new school site in West Auckland to cope with rapid population growth in the area, Education Minister Chris Hipkins says. The Ministry is working with existing local schools to determine how the 1.5-hectare site at 279 Hobsonville Point Road will be used to support ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Trans-Tasman travel window to close at midnight tomorrow
    A further 500 MIQ rooms released for managed returnees from NSW Further Government actions announced today are balanced to provide more certainty for Kiwis wanting to return from Australia, while continuing to protect New Zealand from COVID-19, acting Minister for COVID-19 Response Ayesha Verrall says. The actions were foreshadowed last ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Govt investing millions in Hawke's Bay and Tairāwhiti schools
    Napier Boys’ and Girls’ High Schools are among those set to benefit from a $16.5 million investment in the Hawke's Bay and Tairāwhiti region, Economic and Regional Development Minister Stuart Nash announced today. The Government has set aside money in Budget 2021 to accelerate five projects in Napier, Hastings, Havelock North ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Game changing Jobs for Nature investment for Northland
    Conservation Minister Kiri Allan has announced Jobs for Nature funding for a portfolio of projects that will create ‘game changing’ gains for nature and communities across Northland/Te Tai Tokerau as part of the Government’s acceleration of the economic recovery from COVID. “This portfolio of 12 projects will see over $20 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Third COVID-19 vaccine receives provisional approval
    New Zealand’s regulatory authority Medsafe has granted provisional approval of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine for individuals 18 years of age and older, Acting Minister for COVID-19 Response Dr Ayesha Verrall announced today. New Zealand secured 7.6 million doses (enough for 3.8 million people) of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine through an ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Bowel-cancer screening programme is saving lives
    More than 1000 New Zealanders have had bowel cancer – New Zealand’s second-most-common cause of death from cancer - detected under the Government’s National Bowel Screening Programme, Health Minister Andrew Little said today. More than 1200 New Zealanders died from bowel cancer in 2017. The screening programme aims to save ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Govt welcomes draft report on the retail grocery sector
    The Commerce Commission’s draft report into the retail grocery sector is being welcomed by Government as a major milestone. “I asked the Commerce Commission to look at whether this sector is as competitive as it could be and today it has released its draft report for consultation,” Commerce and Consumer ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Christchurch’s Youth Hub ‘set to go’ thanks to further Government funding
    Construction of New Zealand’s first, purpose-built centre for youth well-being is ready to get underway thanks to an extra $2.5 million of COVID-19 response funding, Housing Minister and Associate Minister of Finance, Megan Woods announced today.  “The Christchurch Youth Hub is about bringing together all the things young people need ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Next step to protect Milford Sound Piopiotahi
    Expert group lays out plan to better protect iconic UNESCO World Heritage site Milford Sound Piopiotahi and its surrounds Funding confirmed for dedicated unit and Establishment Board to assess the recommendations and provide oversight of the process from here Milford Opportunities Project a test case for transformational change in tourism ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Funding for projects to reduce waste from construction and demolition
    The Government has announced funding for projects in Auckland and the lower North Island to help reduce construction and demolition waste. “Construction is the main source of waste sent to landfill, and much of this could be reduced, reused and recovered,” Environment Minister David Parker said. “The Government is funding ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Speech at the launch of the National Hepatitis C Action Plan
    Tēnā koutou katoa. Thank you Anglesea Pharmacy and Te Manawa Taki for hosting this event. As a doctor, I saw first hand the impact of hepatitis C. I met Moana in 2019; she came to the infectious diseases outpatient clinic at Wellington Hospital having tested positive for hepatitis C. Like ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Plan to eliminate hepatitis C as a major health threat by 2030
    A plan to eliminate hepatitis C in New Zealand, reducing liver cancer and the need for liver transplants, has been released today by Associate Minister of Health Dr Ayesha Verrall. “Around 45,000 New Zealanders have hepatitis C, but only around half know they have it,” said Ayesha Verrall. “Symptoms often ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • School upgrades and new classrooms for West Coast, Tasman and Canterbury
    A funding injection from Budget 2021 to complete four shovel ready projects and new classrooms at six schools and kura will provide a real boost to local communities, Minister Dr Megan Woods announced today. “This Government has committed to providing quality fit for purpose learning environments and 100,000 new student ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Warmer Kiwi Homes smashes annual target
    The Government's highly successful insulation and heating programme, Warmer Kiwi Homes, is celebrating a key milestone with the completion of more than 38,000 insulation and efficient heater installs in the year to the end of June, smashing its target of 25,000 installs for the year. “The Warmer Kiwi Homes scheme ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Exemption granted for Wallabies to enter NZ
    Bledisloe Cup rugby will be played in New Zealand after the Australian rugby team received an economic exemption to enter New Zealand. Travel between Australia and New Zealand was suspended on Friday for at least eight weeks following the worsening of the COVID outbreak across the Tasman. New Zealanders have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Minister of Foreign Affairs makes three diplomatic appointments
    Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta today announced three New Zealand Head of Mission appointments. They are: Mike Walsh as Ambassador to Iran Michael Upton as Ambassador to Ethiopia and the African Union Kevin Burnett as Ambassador to Indonesia Iran “Aotearoa New Zealand has a long-standing and constructive relationship with Iran, despite a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Enhanced Task Force Green Approved for West Coast and Marlborough
    The Government has activated Enhanced Task Force Green (ETFG) in response to the West Coast and Marlborough floods, Social Development and Employment Minister Carmel Sepuloni announced today. “To assist with the clean-up, up to $500,000 will be made available to support the recovery in Buller and Marlborough which has experienced ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Govt support for upgrade of Eden Park players facilities
    Minister for Sport and Recreation Hon Grant Robertson has announced funding to upgrade the players facilities at Eden Park ahead of upcoming Women’s World Cup events. Eden Park is a confirmed venue for the Rugby World Cup 2021, the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup 2022, and a proposed venue for matches of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • More jobs and quicker public transport motoring towards West Auckland
    Work to improve public transport for West Aucklanders and support the region’s economic recovery by creating hundreds of jobs has officially kicked off, Transport Minister Michael Wood announced today. Michael Wood and Auckland Mayor Phil Goff this morning marked the start of construction on the Northwestern Bus Improvements project. It ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Government backs critical health research
    Research into some of New Zealanders’ biggest health concerns including cancer, diabetes, and heart disease is getting crucial support in the latest round of health research funding, Health Minister Andrew Little announced today. The funding, awarded through the Health Research Council of New Zealand, covers 31 General Project grants ($36.64 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New Bay of Islands hospital facilities to bring services closer to home
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Health Minister Andrew Little have joined a ceremony to bless the site and workers for Phase Two of the redevelopment of the Bay of Islands Hospital in Kawakawa today. The new building will house outpatients and primary care facilities, as well as expanded renal care ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Raukokore re-imagined with ‘smart’ relocatable rent to own housing
    Iwi, Crown Partnership Relocatable, fully insulated housing, connected to a new solar plant Provides a pathway to home ownership New housing in the remote eastern Bay of Plenty community of Raukokore shows how iwi and Crown agencies can work together effectively to provide warm, dry, energy efficient homes in a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Cabinet accepts Turkish authorities’ request for the managed return of three NZ citizens
    Cabinet has agreed to the managed return of a New Zealand citizen and her two young children from Turkey, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today. The three have been in immigration detention in Turkey since crossing the border from Syria earlier this year. Turkey has requested that New Zealand repatriate ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Govt delivers more classrooms so children can focus on learning
    Extra Government investment in classrooms and school building projects will enable students and teachers to focus on education rather than overcrowding as school rolls grow across the country, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis say. The pair visited Ruakākā School in Whangārei today to announce $100 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New station a platform for AirportLink to take off
    Every Aucklander with access to the rail network will now have a quick and convenient trip to the airport, Transport Minister Michael Wood and Auckland Mayor Phil Goff said during the official opening of the new Puhinui Interchange today. The new interchange links the rail platform with a new bus ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • 10 days sick leave for employees delivered
    Legislation doubling employees’ minimum sick leave entitlement to 10 days comes into effect today, bringing benefits to both businesses and employees, Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Michael Wood announced today. “Our Government is delivering on a key manifesto commitment to help Kiwis and workplaces stay healthy,” Michael Wood said. “COVID-19 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister congratulates Fiame Naomi Mata’afa on Election Win
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern tonight congratulated Prime Minister-elect Fiame Naomi Mata’afa on her victory in the Samoa’s general election. “New Zealand has a special relationship with Samoa, anchored in the Treaty of Friendship. We look forward to working with Samoa’s new government in the spirit of partnership that characterises this ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Quarantine Free Travel with Australia suspended
    Quarantine Free Travel from all Australian states and territories to New Zealand is being suspended as the Covid situation there worsens, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. From 11.59pm today Australians will no longer be able to enter New Zealand quarantine-free. This will be ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Growing conservation efforts in Gisborne
    A big injection of Jobs for Nature funding will create much-needed jobs and financial security for families in TeTairāwhiti, and has exciting prospects for conservation in the region, Conservation Minister Kiri Allan says. “The projects target local communities most affected by the economic consequences of COVID 19 and are designed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Flood recovery given further assistance
    The Government is contributing a further $1 million to help the flood battered Buller community, Acting Emergency Management Minister Kris Faafoi announced today. “Buller is a small community which has found itself suddenly facing significant and ongoing welfare costs. While many emergency welfare costs are reimbursed by Government, this money ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Funding for five projects to reduce food waste
    The Government is funding five projects to help address the growing problem of food waste, Environment Minister David Parker announced today. “New Zealand households throw away nearly 300,000 tonnes of food every year, half of which could still be eaten. By supporting these initiatives, we’re taking steps to reduce this ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Temporary Accommodation Service activated for West Coast flooding event
    The Temporary Accommodation Service (TAS) has been activated today - meaning residents on the West Coast of the South Island and in the Marlborough region hit by flooding over the weekend can now access help finding temporary accommodation, announced Associate Minister of Housing (Public Housing) Poto Williams in Westport today. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Pause to Quarantine Free Travel from South Australia to New Zealand
    Quarantine Free Travel from South Australia to New Zealand will be paused from 11.59am (NZT) tonight, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins has announced. However, people currently in the state who ordinarily live in New Zealand will be able to return on “managed return” flights starting with the next available flight, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand condemns malicious cyber activity by Chinese state-sponsored actors
    New Zealand has established links between Chinese state-sponsored actors known as Advanced Persistent Threat 40 (APT40) and malicious cyber activity in New Zealand. “The GCSB has worked through a robust technical attribution process in relation to this activity. New Zealand is today joining other countries in strongly condemning this malicious ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Remarks to Diplomatic Corps
    It is a pleasure to be with you all this evening. Some of you may have been surprised when you received an invitation from the Minister of Disarmament and Arms Control, and I would forgive you if you were. New Zealand is unique in having established a Ministerial portfolio ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Early Pfizer shipment boosts vaccine schedule
    The largest shipment of the Pfizer vaccine to date has arrived into New Zealand two days ahead of schedule, and doses are already being delivered to vaccination centres around the country, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins says. “The shipment of more than 370,000 doses reached New Zealand yesterday, following a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago