27 September 2023

In fine we trust!

Start the conversation

To the national Information Commission today where the nation’s hard-working information protectors are checking out what went wrong at Medibank when personal information of 9.7 million innocent clients ended up in the hands of bad people who held it all for ransom.

Thankfully, the ransom wasn’t paid and the clients’ data reorganised so it can’t be used except to embarrass some, but one wouldn’t want to be one of the ransomers if – and when! – they’re uncovered and brought to pay for their shameful game.

According to the Commission, the cost of the ransom’s short period of interest could see them digging holes in jails for a very long time just so they can pay the fines they’ll be up for.

“The Commissioner has the power to seek civil penalties through the Federal Court of up to $2.2 million for each contravention,” the Information Commissioner declared.

That amounts to fines of $2,200,000 x 9,700,000 which adds up to the total amount of $21,340,000,000,000, or $21.34 trillion in possible fines for each guilty rensomer.

According to the money experts, $21.34 trillion would reach the moon 8 and half times over, weigh more than 200 tonnes and allow the community that collects the fine to spend $1,150 million every day for the next 50 years, and still have some over!

Worth every cent in PS-sssst!s opinion!

When the extra territory is at it

Staying with the Information Commission now where the office welcomes another new law which empowers it with tougher penalties and more powers to use over international companies should it need to.

According to the Commission the new powers will allow it to engage with domestic regulators as well as ‘international counterparts’ to perform its regulatory role ‘efficiently and effectively’.

In particular the Commissioner noted the “simplification of extraterritoriality” provisions in the new rules.

Needless to say PS-sssst! couldn’t let the term ‘extraterritoriality’ walk away unquestioned.

And positively happy we are!

It would appear ‘extraterritoriality’ is a word with two meanings, each intriguingly different from the other:

First, a noun: “Immunity from the jurisdiction of a nation, granted to foreign diplomatic officials, foreign warships…”.

Second, still a noun: “The applicability or exercise of a sovereign’s laws outside its territory”.

Could it be that what a country chooses not to do within its boundaries in the first meaning it can choose to do outside its boundaries in the second?

One learns something new every day!

Just the typo!

Special mention this week now for Craig B of Queensland Corrections for swooping on a typo error in the PS-sssst! column a little while back, when we were saying nice things about former Australian of the Year, Professor Fiona Wood launching her latest book, Under Her Skin.

Advising readers how to win free copies of the book, the ever stumbling PS-sssst! opened a sentence with the blunder “To take the chance” prompting Craig to question if it was “Really?”.

“In PS-sssst! column well done,” Craig offered.

Thanks for the correction, Craig. We’re glad you liked it!

As usual a ‘Perfectly Popular Pack of PS-sssst! Paraphernalia’ will be on its way to Craig for contributing to PS-sssst’s ever-extending embarrassment but learning more every day!


Pictures of crocodiles

To Rama Gaind’s end of year gala giveaway now in which 18 lucky readers of PS News had the chance to win free Family Tickets to Sony Pictures’ new Christmas comedy musical Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile when it opens in cinemas on Boxing Day.

With two free family tickets for each of PS News nine editions, the first winners to be drawn from the judge’s are:

Suzanna A of the Federal Department of Home Affairs; Carol C at the National Indigenous Australians Agency; Heath J and Lyn B of Services Australia in Canberra; Paul W of the Victorian Public Service; Lyn B of NSW; Lisa A and Karen M of Western Australia; Jan B of South Australia; Rod M of Queensland; and entries from Cec L, Mel C, Tbf L, Ern D, Ozel D, Diana D, SC, Pan O to be scattered across the country.

Happy Christmas congratulations to all the winners and thanks to everyone for taking part in the fun.

This is Rama’s last giveaway for 2022 but she’ll be back in 2023 with more goodies and giveaways to enjoy.

Until then….

Sub unedited!

And finally, congratulations to the wise and wonderful PS News readers in South Australia who were the only team to reach a new height of readers in the month of November, adding their numbers to 12,100 from a starting point back in January of 9,800.

Congratulations to SA for leading the way to PS News’s national following of 180,990 readers, just a handful of new readers short of reaching 181,000 in the days and weeks ahead.

Till next week…..

Something to share?

Send to [email protected]

(And, yes, it can be anonymous!)

Start the conversation

Be among the first to get all the Public Sector and Defence news and views that matter.

Subscribe now and receive the latest news, delivered free to your inbox.

By submitting your email address you are agreeing to Region Group's terms and conditions and privacy policy.