Privacy, copyright and disclaimer

How your personal information is managed by Taumata Arowai, and copyright and disclaimer statements about material on our website.

Privacy notice

Privacy

This privacy statement covers how personal information managed by Taumata Arowai will be respected and cared for.

At Taumata Arowai we are committed to ensuring that personal information is treated appropriately and in accordance with the requirements of the Privacy Act 2020. We will only collect, use or disclose personal information as allowed under our governing legislation or the Privacy Act.

Collecting and using your information

We collect information from you when you:

  • talk to us over the phone
  • meet with us
  • provide us with documents and evidence in any form.

Sharing your information

We only share your personal information if it is required under our governing legislation or by law.

Securing your information

We will respect your information and keep it safe. We know your information is very important and take our responsibilities seriously. Our staff are trained in the appropriate use of information and are aware of how to keep information your information confidential.

We have systems and safeguards in place to control how we collect, manage and use your information. This helps us use your information appropriately and keep it safe.

Our systems are secure and only people that need to use your personal information will have access to it. This includes digital, electronic and physical (hard copy) information. 

All information generated by Taumata Arowai are public records and will be managed under the provisions of the Public Records Act 2005.

Accessing and correcting your personal information

If you have any concerns and wish to access or amend any of the personal information you provided to Taumata Arowai, please email info@taumataarowai.govt.nz

Privacy while using this website

This website can be viewed without the need to disclose any personal information to us.

You may decide to provide identifying information when:

  • subscribing to site updates by email (when available)
  • seeking information from or via the site
  • asking us a question
  • providing feedback to us.

Personal information that you provide will be held by Taumata Arowai.

We will only use personal information provided to communicate with you if you have asked a question or requested us to contact you.

We use Google Analytics to collect statistical information about your visit to help us analyse use of, and improve, the website. This information includes:

  • users' IP addresses
  • users' search terms
  • pages accessed on the site
  • links that are clicked on
  • date and time of site visits
  • previous visited site
  • users' operating systems
  • browsers used when accessing the site. 

The website generates persistent cookies for all visitors for the purpose of collecting the statistical information referred to above. The cookies, which can be found on your computer, are named:

  • _ga_DRQP9LMXZ3
  • _ga

Questions and support

If you have a question about the information we hold, or a concern about how we've handled your information, you can email us on info@taumataarowai.govt.nz

Copyright statement

Copyright

Copyright ©. Copyright material on this website is protected by copyright owned by Taumata Arowai. 

Unless indicated otherwise, this copyright material is licensed for re-use under Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 New Zealand Licence. In essence, you are free to copy, distribute and adapt the material, as long as you attribute it to Taumata Arowai and abide by the other licence terms.

Please note that this licence does not apply to any logos, emblems, trademarks, photography or imagery on the website or to the website’s design elements. Those specific items may not be re-used without express permission.

This notice of copyright should accompany any information printed or downloaded from the web server.

Disclaimer

Disclaimer

The information available on or through this website is intended to provide general information to the public. All reasonable measures have been taken to ensure the quality and accuracy of this information.

Those accessing this website are advised:

  • Taumata Arowai makes no warranty, express or implied, nor assumes any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, correctness, completeness or use of any information that is available on or through this website, nor represents that its use would not infringe on privately owned rights.
  • Taumata Arowai may change, delete, add to, or otherwise amend information contained on this website without notice.
  • The content of this website should not be construed as legal, business or tax advice and visitors to this website should take specific advice from qualified professional people before undertaking any action following information received from this website.
  • Each page on this website must be read in conjunction with this disclaimer and any other disclaimer that forms part of it.

This notice of disclaimer should accompany any information printed or downloaded from the web server.

Transparency statement on information gathering

Overarching transparency statement 

This transparency statement explains how Taumata Arowai gathers information for regulatory compliance and law enforcement purposes.  

We gather information from drinking water suppliers, network operators and other entities and individuals in order to protect the safety of drinking water for New Zealanders by: 

  • detecting, investigating and prosecuting or penalising criminal offending 
  • preventing, investigating and responding to regulatory non-compliance  
  • taking appropriate steps to respond to and mitigate threats to the physical security of staff, or the security of information or places. 

We take care to exercise our information gathering powers lawfully, ethically and appropriately, and meet our obligations under the Privacy Act 2020, Search and Surveillance Act 2012, New Zealand Bill of Rights Act 1990, Taumata Arowai Code of Conduct, Public Service Commission Standards of Integrity and Conduct and other relevant Taumata Arowai policies and procedures.  

Our processes and activities are regularly reviewed to ensure compliance with the law, and with our internal policies and procedures. 

This statement applies to information gathered by us, our contractors, or any third parties engaged by us. 

What information is covered by this statement, and why do we collect it? 

This section explains how we collect, use and share information when we are carrying out our functions such as considering and investigating compliance breaches and complaints, initiating our own investigations or inquiries, and determining compliance and enforcement strategies or actions. 

We are also required to protect that information and only disclose what we consider is necessary to give effect to our legislated responsibilities, to support other government agencies’ law enforcement, regulatory compliance and protective security activities, or otherwise in accordance with the law. 

How do we collect information? 

We collect information when carrying out our statutory functions under the Taumata Arowai–the Water Services Regulator Act 2020 and the Water Services Act 2021.  

The Water Services Act 2021 empowers us to request or require the information we need to give effect to that legislation, including to monitor and ensure compliance, as well as carry out investigations where we believe people may be in breach. 

We collect information from a variety of sources in both physical and digital environments. These sources include:  

  • individuals (e.g. in-person interviews, phone calls and emails);  
  • information from online sources (e.g. websites, social media, and public registers);  
  • information from physical sources and locations (e.g. site visits, inspections, samples);  
  • other agencies or entities (e.g. NZ government agencies, private sector companies);  
  • information gathered from technical and scientific testing devices and laboratories. 

Before we gather information from any of the above sources, we consider whether our actions are lawful, ethical and appropriate. We consider the severity of the harm we are seeking to prevent or address and whether the information gathering activity is proportionate. We take into account the impact of information gathering on individuals and communities and any other relevant considerations including tikanga Māori principles. 

Information collected directly 

Much of the information we collect is provided directly by regulated entities or individuals as a requirement to fulfil statutory obligations and according to our powers as a regulator. 

Where we require information that is relevant to us considering and investigating compliance breaches, complaints, and initiating our own investigations or inquiries, we may gather information from people or entities using our statutory powers under the Water Services Act 2021. 

As part of the use of our statutory powers and to gather and preserve information and evidence, we may: 

  • inspect and make copies or take extracts from records or documents;  
  • direct an original or copy of a record or document to be provided to us;  
  • require names and addresses in certain circumstances; 
  • take and test samples of source water, raw water and drinking water; 
  • record a compulsory or voluntary interview;   
  • request the supply of written information in response to questions;  
  • take photographs, video/audio recordings, other images and/or notes while conducting our enquiries.  

We may request the assistance of another agency or person in relation to the exercise of our statutory powers (e.g. the New Zealand Police).  

Information collected from another person or agency 

We may also receive or request information about an individual or entity from other individuals, entities or agencies. Any such information will be gathered in accordance with our statutory powers or other lawful authority and in compliance with the relevant legislation and any information-sharing agreements, memoranda of understanding (MOUs) or similar. 

We may also collect publicly available information (e.g. website content, social media content and news media reports) when it is relevant in carrying out any of our powers, functions or duties.  

Information collection to prevent significant harm 

Taumata Arowai has a responsibility to protect the safety of drinking water, and to oversee the environmental performance of wastewater and stormwater networks for New Zealanders. In situations where Taumata Arowai is seeking to prevent, or address, significant harm we may consider it appropriate to undertake information gathering activity that has an increased impact on an individual. 

We may collect information by means in which a Taumata Arowai staff member is not immediately identifiable. This may be necessary where other means of information collection would prejudice an ongoing investigation, or otherwise prevent Taumata Arowai from fulfilling its responsibilities.  This includes surveillance activities in accordance with the Search and Surveillance Act 2012. 

Collection in these circumstances is subject to enhanced levels of oversight and increased internal controls to ensure it is conducted appropriately.  

Collection by third parties 

Where information gathering requires specialist capability that we don’t have within our organisation, we may engage a third party to collect information for us.  Such information gathering (including about individuals) is subject to standard legal limits relating to privacy, access to private property, and the privacy/security of communications by individuals, among other things. 

We take care to exercise our information gathering powers lawfully and appropriately and meet our obligations under the Privacy Act 2020, Public Service Commission Standards of Integrity and Conduct, and Public Service Commission Model Standards Information gathering and public trust at all times. 

What do we do with the information? 

How we use information 

We will only use information provided to us in a manner allowed by law, such as when considering and investigating compliance breaches, initiating our own investigations or inquiries, and determining compliance strategies.  

When we share information 

We may share information where necessary to properly carry out our legislated functions. This information will be shared in accordance with our statutory powers and in compliance with the relevant legislation and any information sharing agreements, MOUs or similar with the other agency. 

We may share information with third parties when taking steps to verify information provided to us. 

We may, for example, share information with: 

  • another regulator (e.g., the Ministry for Primary Industries) 
  • the Police or another government agency, if required by law (e.g., to assist with the investigation of a criminal offence), or to report significant misconduct or breach of duty or where there is a serious threat to health or safety.  

Taumata Arowai is subject to the Official Information Act 1982. This means that information held by Taumata Arowai will be made available to a requestor unless there is a good reason to withhold it. Requests for information are considered on a case-by-case basis. 

We recognise information may be provided that is private, commercially sensitive and/or in confidence. We will take steps to preserve confidentiality and to provide the appropriate protections against disclosure unless we are required to do so by law. 

How do we protect information? 

Information is stored, accessed and retained in accordance with our Privacy and Information Management policies, and in compliance with the Privacy Act 2020 and the Public Records Act 2005. 

Feedback and complaints 

If you have any questions about our information-gathering activities, please email info@taumataarowai.govt.nz. 

If you believe we have not acted lawfully or in accordance with this statement, please contact us. Alternatively, you may wish to complain to the Privacy Commissioner or Ombudsman, if applicable.