Release of Industry Guideline: Assisting Consumers Affected by Domestic and Family Violence
Communications Alliance has released a substantially revised and updated industry guideline designed to help telcos better support Australians affected by domestic and family violence (DFV).
Developed through a comprehensive and collaborative review process involving both general and DFV specialist consumer groups, government and regulatory agencies and telcos, the guideline provides up-to-date, industry best-practice information to assist retail Carriage Service Providers (RSPs) better recognise and safely respond to customers impacted by DFV.
In addition to being expanded to better cover the numerous ways that DFV can present in the context of telecommunication services (it is not always obvious), the guideline has been extensively restructured and amended to better support its practical implementation. The plain-English information, guidance and advice is written is designed to help management and staff better understand the issues and risks within the context of the industry and their role within it, and within the context and constraints of other telecommunications industry legal and regulatory obligations, thereby allowing them to identify and assist affected consumers appropriately, discreetly and safely.
The guideline is aspirational, going beyond industry’s current capabilities, and it will take time for RSPs to review their current practices and consider where improvements might be made. However, Communications Alliance also recognises that there are key elements of the guideline that are critical for its successful implementation and has already started to look at codifying key clauses from the guideline as part of the upcoming revision of the registered and enforceable Telecommunications Consumer Protections (TCP) Code.
Significantly, Communications Alliance has also already strengthened protections for those affected by DFV in proposed changes to two other Codes – both currently awaiting registration - that were reviewed in parallel with the DFV Guideline.
The updated guideline, G660:2023: Assisting Consumers Affected by Domestic and Family Violence is available on the Communications Alliance website. Further details are included in the full press release, available here.
2023-2030 Cyber Security Strategy Submission
Communications Alliance made a submission in response to the Department of Home Affairs 2023-2030 Cyber Security Strategy Discussion Paper.
The submission answers the majority but not all the questions placed forward in the Discussion Paper. The submission focuses on key areas such as:
- What ideas we would like to see included in the Strategy to make Australia the most Cyber Secure nation in the world by 2030;
- Legislative and regulatory reform that involve;
- Harmonisation of frameworks/strategies/requirements;
- Streamlining of organisational, functional and process-related resources
- Building our regional cyber resilience and response;
- Improvements on International alignment;
- How can government departments and agencies better demonstrate and deliver cyber security best practice and serve as a model for other agencies;
- Improving information and threat sharing and incident reporting;
- Mandatory reporting of ransomware and extortion;
- What more Government can do to support Australia’s cyber security workforce through education, immigration, and accreditation;
- Post-incident response;
- Best practice to protect victims / ecosystem / futureproofing, etc
- Evaluation and assessment of the Strategy.
Submission re Public Country-by-Country Reporting Exposure Draft
Communications Alliance has made a submission in response to the Treasury Laws Amendment (Measures 4 for Future Bills) Bill 2023: Multinational 5 tax transparency - Tax changes (Public country-by-country reporting (PCbCR)).
The submission highlights that the proposals exceed internationally-coordinated approaches and calls on Government to adopt reframed PCbCR rules consistent with the OECD BEPS Action 13 agreed outcomes.
The submission also provides commentary on the policy clarity and the ability to effectively assess the impact of the proposed legislation against a very broadly framed stated objective.
Importantly, in our submission we also note concerns around the treatment of confidential and competitively sensitive information under the proposed rules.
Below is a list of currently open telecommunications-related consultations being conducted by Government and other organisations that provide an opportunity for you to have your say.