About two years ago, Terri was pondering an idea to start a completely transparent privacy certification program. She had noticed that in Australia and abroad, there was a real issue with trust around the idea of privacy certification – but overwhelmingly, consumers still looked to privacy seals to find confidence in a business’s privacy practices.
The irony in using privacy seals as a sign of trust was that there had been an upswell of unrest after a major US based privacy certification program was caught cutting corners, misleading consumers and being shady with their certification process.
This is where Openly was born. A vibrant privacy-tech start-up offering consumers a fresh way to assess whether a business is playing by the rules. A transparent solution.
The Openly concept has changed a lot since that first idea.
We have developed a privacy code, and we are currently in the process of registering it as a legislative instrument. This is revolutionary, because it means that businesses who are Openly Certified are bound by Australian Law. There are significant penalties for non-compliance, but more than that, it legitimises the process by which we issue certifications. Every certification is scrutinised, and we too are bound by the same laws to ensure we deliver an unbiased & trusted service to consumers.
In the recently released Community Attitudes to Privacy Survey, conducted by the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner, the message from consumers was clear. 74% of respondents said they believe privacy certification makes an organisation more trustworthy. Further, the Attorney General’s Department is actively exploring domestic privacy certification as a measure of privacy law reform in Australia.
We have got a huge amount to show off over the coming weeks, but for now we celebrate the beta launch of Openly For Business. We hope to be working with you and other Australian businesses over the course of 2021 and beyond.
If you have any comments, please feel free to reach out to me directly via email. I am always keen to hear the thoughts of the people we are developing for.
More to come.
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