Australia Data Privacy
The Australian Privacy Principles (APPs) set out in the Australian Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) impose requirements for collecting, managing, dealing with, using, disclosing and otherwise handling personal information. The APPs set out data protection principles to protect the privacy of individuals.
AWS is vigilant about your privacy and data security. Security at AWS starts with our core infrastructure. Custom-built for the cloud and designed to meet the most stringent security requirements in the world, our infrastructure is monitored 24x7 to ensure the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of our customer's data. The same world-class security experts who monitor this infrastructure also build and maintain our broad selection of innovative security services, which can help you simplify meeting your own security and regulatory requirements. As an AWS customer, regardless of your size or location, you inherit all the benefits of our experience, tested against the strictest of third-party assurance frameworks.
AWS implements and maintains technical and organizational security measures applicable to AWS cloud infrastructure services under globally recognized security assurance frameworks and certifications, including IRAP, ISO 27001, ISO 27017, ISO 27018, PCI DSS Level 1, and SOC 1, 2, and 3. These technical and organizational security measures are validated by independent third-party assessors, and are designed to prevent unauthorized access to or disclosure of customer content.
For example, ISO 27018 is the first International code of practice that focuses on protection of personal data in the cloud. It is based on ISO information security standard 27002 and provides implementation guidance on ISO 27002 controls applicable to Personally Identifiable Information (PII) processed by public cloud service providers. This demonstrates to customers that AWS has a system of controls in place that specifically address the privacy protection of their content.
These comprehensive AWS technical and organizational measures are consistent with the goals of the APPs to protect personal data. Customers using AWS services maintain control over their content and are responsible for implementing additional security measures based on their specific needs, including content classification, encryption, access management and security credentials.
As AWS does not have visibility into or knowledge of what customers are uploading onto its network, including whether or not that data is deemed subject to the Privacy Act, customers are ultimately responsible for their own compliance with the Privacy Act and related regulations. The content on this page supplements the existing Data Privacy resources to help you align your requirements with the AWS Shared Responsibility Model when you store and process personal data using AWS services.
What is the customer’s role in securing their content?
Under the AWS Shared Responsibility Model, AWS customers retain control of what security they choose to implement to protect their own content, platform, applications, systems and networks, no differently than they would for applications in an on-site data center. Customers can build on the technical and organizational security measures and controls offered by AWS to manage their own compliance requirements. Customers can use familiar measures to protect their data, such as encryption and multi-factor authentication, in addition to AWS security features like AWS Identity and Access Management.
When evaluating the security of a cloud solution, it is important for customers to understand and distinguish between:
- Security measures that AWS implements and operates - "security of the cloud", and
- Security measures that customers implement and operate, related to the security of their customer content and applications that make use of AWS services - "security in the cloud"
Who can access customer content?
Customers maintain ownership and control of their customer content and select which AWS services process, store and host their customer content. AWS does not have visibility into customer content and does not access or use customer content except to provide the AWS services selected by a customer or where required to comply with the law or a binding legal order.
Customers using AWS services maintain control over their content within the AWS environment. They can:
- Determine where it will be located, for example the type of storage environment and geographic location of that storage.
- Control the format of that content, for example plain text, masked, anonymized or encrypted, using either AWS provided encryption or a third-party encryption mechanism of the customer’s choice.
- Manage other access controls, such as identity access management and security credentials.
- Control whether to use SSL, Virtual Private Cloud and other network security measures to prevent unauthorized access.
This allows AWS customers to control the entire life-cycle of their content on AWS and manage their content in accordance with their own specific needs, including content classification, access control, retention and deletion.
Where is customer content stored?
The AWS Global Infrastructure gives you the flexibility of choosing how and where you want to run your workloads, and when you do you are using the same network, control plane, API’s, and AWS services. If you would like to run your applications globally you can choose from any of the AWS Regions and Availability Zones. As a customer, you choose the AWS Region(s) in which your customer content is stored, allowing you to deploy AWS services in the location(s) of your choice, in accordance with your specific geographic requirements. For example, if an AWS customer in Australia wants to store their data only in Australia, they can choose to deploy their AWS services exclusively in the Asia Pacific (Sydney) AWS Region. If you want to discover other flexible storage options see the AWS Regions webpage.
You can replicate and back up your customer content in more than one AWS Region. We will not move or replicate your content outside of your chosen AWS Region(s) without your agreement, except in each case as necessary to comply with the law or a binding order of a governmental body. However, it is important to note that all AWS services may not be available in all AWS Regions. For more information about which services are available in which AWS Regions, see the AWS Regional Services webpage.
How does AWS secure its data centers?
The AWS data center security strategy is assembled with scalable security controls and multiple layers of defense that help to protect your information. For example, AWS carefully manages potential flood and seismic activity risks. We use physical barriers, security guards, threat detection technology, and an in-depth screening process to limit access to data centers. We back up our systems, regularly test equipment and processes, and continuously train AWS employees to be ready for the unexpected.
To validate the security of our data centers, external auditors perform testing on more than 2,600 standards and requirements throughout the year. Such independent examination helps ensure that security standards are consistently being met or exceeded. As a result, the most highly regulated organizations in the world trust AWS to protect their data.
Learn more about how we secure AWS data centers by design by taking a virtual tour »
Which AWS Regions can I use?
What security measures does AWS have in place to protect systems?
The AWS Cloud infrastructure has been architected to be one of the most flexible and secure cloud computing environments available today. Amazon's scale allows significantly more investment in security policing and countermeasures than almost any large company could afford on its own. This infrastructure is comprised of the hardware, software, networking, and facilities that run AWS services, which provide powerful controls to customers and APN Partners, including security configuration controls, for the handling of personal data.
AWS also provides several compliance reports from third-party auditors who have tested and verified our compliance with a variety of security standards and regulations - including ISO 27001, ISO 27017, and ISO 27018. To provide transparency on the effectiveness of these measures, we provide access to the third party audit reports in AWS Artifact. These reports show our customers and APN Partners, who may act as either data controllers or data processors, that we are protecting the underlying infrastructure upon which they store and process personal data. For more information, visit our Compliance Resources.
What about the Australian Notifiable Data Breaches (NDB) Scheme?
AWS offers two types of Australian Notifiable Data Breaches (ANDB) Addenda to customers who are subject to the Australian Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) and are using AWS to store and process personal information covered by the NDB scheme. The ANDB Addenda address customers' need for notification if a security event affects their data. AWS has made both types of ANDB Addenda available online as click-through agreements in AWS Artifact (the customer-facing audit and compliance portal that can be accessed from the AWS management console). The first type, the Account ANDB Addendum applies only to the specific individual account that accepts the Account ANDB Addendum. The Account ANDB Addendum must be separately accepted for each AWS account that a customer requires to be covered. The second type, the Organizations ANDB Addendum, once accepted by a master account in AWS Organizations, applies to the master account and all member accounts in that AWS Organization. If a customer does not need or want to take advantage of the Organizations ANDB Addendum, they can still accept the Account ANDB Addendum for individual accounts. ANDB Addendum frequently asked questions are available online at AWS Artifact FAQ.