The Queensland digital licence app.
The Queensland digital licence app.

Privacy fears: Where your licence details could end up

MIRANI MP Stephen Andrew has raised privacy concerns over a plan to introduce a digital licence app, fearing it will allow groups to access Australian citizens' identity information in real time.

The Queensland Government is trialling a digital licence app in the Fraser Coast region.

The trial will run until the end of September when the government will assess the results and decide its future from there.

Mr Andrew flagged his fears over the technology while speaking in parliament on the Transport and Other Legislation (Road Safety, Technology and Other Matters) Amendment Bill.

"The app's high definition facial imaging data will be shared with the Commonwealth Government and the biometric templates created from these images stored indefinitely," the Mirani MP said.

"Ultimately the plan is to allow law enforcement … intelligence agencies and even NGOs to share and access Australian citizens' identity information in real time."

Mirani MP Stephen Andrew.
Mirani MP Stephen Andrew.

Mr Andrew said he was also concerned about comments in a government document that the new app will "initially include digital driver's licences, photo identification cards and recreational licences".

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"That word 'initially' bothers me a lot," he said.

"Exactly what other information is the government planning to include under this system? Health information? Tax and Insurance information? DNA data?

"The list of possibilities is endless and none of them very good."

Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey told parliament the app would be protect Queenslanders' privacy.

"Queenslanders can have confidence in the app," Mr Bailey said.

"My department has completed a privacy impact assessment as part of its due diligence in understanding any risks and mitigations relating to the app."

He said the assessment had not identified any significant concerns, and all recommendations in that assessment would be fully implemented.

Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey at parliament. Picture: Annette Dew
Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey at parliament. Picture: Annette Dew

"However, the privacy impact assessment would need to be updated before the addition of any future authorities," Mr Bailey said.

"The revised privacy impact assessment would help to ensure that any privacy risks have been identified and addressed before the inclusion of other products was considered."

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The app allows users to store and display their digital credentials, verify their age and identity, and send a PDF copy of their information when needed.

The government said the technology would help users interact with businesses, while keeping their personal information private and secure.


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