Next Business Energy is a licensed electricity retailer. As an entity that collects and handles personal information about our customers and employees, we are bound by the Australian Privacy Principles (APPs) which are set out in the Privacy Act 1988 (Privacy Act).
- How we collect and store your personal information,
- What personal information we collect regarding you and your business,
- How you can access any personal information we hold about you,
- When and how we will disclose any personal information, and
- Ensuring the quality and accuracy of personal information.
How and when we collect your personal information
For customers and potential customers, we aim to only collect information that is necessary to provide you with any service you have requested, being the sale and supply of electricity or related services.
For employees and potential employees, we aim to only collect information that is necessary to provide you with employment and assess your suitability for employment with us.
There are several ways we may collect information about you. These are listed below:
a) When you request supply of electricity from us or when we approach you for the sale of electricity: We may collect information from you when you request supply of electricity at your premises or your business premises. Typically, this information will include:
- your name and your business name,
- your contact details including your email address, your postal address, telephone number and address,
- details about your electricity consumption for the purposes of classifying you as a large or small customer,
- credit history or other credit information regarding your credit history and bankruptcy history,
- details about your energy usage or costs, any concessions or rebates you are eligible for,
- other relevant details we may need to establish or provide your electricity supply.
b) When you call us: You may provide us with a variety of personal information including your name, date of birth, your email address, your postal address, details about your energy usage or costs and your needs. You may choose to call us anonymously and if we can answer your question or take feedback without needing to know who you are, we will happily do so wherever possible, however, in many circumstances it is difficult to provide you with information regarding your account if we cannot identify you.
c) When you visit our website: You are free to visit our website without identifying yourself, however you may leave a trace in the form of your IP address, which we will be able to see. Unless we combine the IP address with other identifying information, it will not be personal information. If you submit an enquiry on our website we will collect your personal information which will typically include your full name, phone number, email address, company name, position in the company and postal address.
d) From a third party: We may collect information about you from a third party, including a contractor, agent, or other parties such as credit collection agencies, electricity distributors, metering coordinators, market operators, government agencies, energy ombudsman schemes and other energy retailers.
e) When you apply for a role with us: We may collect information from you when you seek employment with us. This information may include personal information such as email address, phone number and postal address and may also include information about your skills, qualifications and experience. We may also collect information that is publicly available, for example information that is available via LinkedIn or a public register. In some circumstances, we may also contact references as provided by you and collect information about your employment history.
Types of information we collect
We may collect and hold personal information about you. Personal information is the kind of information that can identify you, which includes details such as name, address, date of birth, age, contact details like phone numbers and email addresses, as well as electronic information from your use of our website.
If you apply for products, services or credit from us, we may also collect and hold various information related to creditworthiness and credit history.
How we use the personal information we collect
We will use personal information only for the purpose it was collected, and/or for one of the reasons stipulated below.
- to provide you with energy and energy related services (for example, metering and distribution services),
- to respond to any queries, complaints or energy matters raised by you or on your behalf (for example, by your authorised agent),
- to provide you with discounts, rebates, concessions and grants that you are entitled to under state and territory laws,
- to assist in considering your capacity to pay and your eligibility for hardship assistance,
- to comply with our legal and regulatory obligations,
- to make assessments of your creditworthiness,
- to administer our website and ensure continuous improvement of our website,
- to engage in marketing of our other products and services where we think these may be of interest to you,
- to undertake research and development work to improve our services,
- to communicate with third parties in the energy industry who are involved in your electricity supply, including, for example, energy distribution companies and energy ombudsman schemes,
- to consider any application for employment you have made with us.
When we may disclose personal information
We may disclose your personal information to the following people/ companies:
1. Essential service providers – there may be other companies that we rely on to provide services to you, for example, electricity distributors or metering coordinators. We may be required to provide your personal information to these companies to ensure that we can deliver services to you, for example:
- To connect your property to the national grid
- To ensure that you have the correct metering in place for your electricity consumption
- To register your premises as requiring life support equipment
2. Our related companies – we may disclose your personal information to our related companies for the purpose of marketing products and services that may be of interest to you.
3. Law enforcement or government bodies – there are exceptions under the Privacy Act with regards to the provision of personal information to law enforcement or government bodies. When a legitimate request is sent to us by a law enforcement or government body we will comply with that request and may provide personal information about you without first seeking your consent.
4. Companies related to us or who take control or part or all of our business – in providing personal information to us you will need to be aware of the possibility that, in future, another company may take control of part or all of our business. We will also share your personal information to companies that are related to us.
5. Credit agencies – if you apply for services from us, we may also collect and hold various information related to your assets and financial position, including credit information or credit eligibility information about you, which we may disclose to credit reporting agencies (please see our statement of notifiable matters).
6. Other third parties – where you have given your consent for us to do so, we may disclose information to third parties such as your representatives, and brokers or advisors.
We use IT infrastructure that is based or involves hosting in countries other than Australia including the United Kingdom, Canada, India and the United States. Where we have a relationship with such providers we ensure that we complete a privacy due diligence on their own practices and procedures to ensure that they are of a high quality.
Third party websites
As part of our operations we may collection credit information from you and make assessments about your eligibility for credit with us. Credit information includes any information related to your creditworthiness and include:
- Information about credit infringements and defaults
- Debt history and application for loans
- Basic information about the types of credit provided to you
- Information about bankruptcy
We may collect credit information about you in the manner and timeframes described in sections 2 and 3 above. In addition, we may also disclose credit information about you to credit related bodies, ombudsman schemes and legal bodies, and other authorised contacts
We may disclose credit related information to third parties to:
- collect amounts, you may owe us in relation to such credit, and
- assign our debt collection activities to an external company.
We may disclose your credit information and credit eligibility for these reasons to the following parties:
- Credit reporting bureaus and other credit providers (please see our statement of notifiable matters)
- To government and law enforcement agencies as required or authorised by law (for example, a regulatory body or an industry ombudsman)
- any person or organisation for which you have given your consent.
You can access any credit related information we hold and can seek to have it corrected. You also have the right to make a complaint if you believe that we have not complied with the Privacy Laws in relation to your information by using the contact details at section 10 of this policy.
How we keep your information secure
Any information we collect about you will be kept securely by us unless an event beyond our control disrupts the measures we have in place. We use up-to-date security, firewall, anti-virus and encryption software to ensure the security of the data we keep. We have procedures in place with regards to staff access to personal information and ensure that only those staff who need to know you have access to your information.
Accessing, updating, correcting your information
You can request access to the personal information that we hold about you by contacting us. We will endeavour to provide a written response to you within 5 business days. If any changes are required, we take reasonable steps to correct the information so that it is accurate, complete and up to date.
How to ask a question or lodge a complaint
If you are concerned about how we have dealt with your personal information you should first contact us. We will endeavour to send you a written response within 4 business days. Your complaint will be managed by our privacy officer who will review it and provide you with a response as soon as possible.
If you are not satisfied with the way we have dealt with your complaint, you may then complain to the Officer of the Australian Information Commissioner:
Next Business Energy
Phone: 1300 466 398
Attention: Privacy Officer
Officer of the Australian Information Commissioner
GPO Box 5218 Sydney NSW 2001
Phone: 1300 363 992