Privacy and credit reporting policy

(effective on and from 20th April 2022)

Statement of Notifiable Matters

Avenue Bank’s Statement of Notifiable Matters supports our Privacy and Credit Reporting Policy and outlines which credit reporting bodies we may disclose your credit-related information to as well as your rights in relation to your credit-related information. You may request to have this Statement of Notifiable Matters provided to you in an alternative form.

Credit Reporting Bodies

Credit reporting bodies are permitted under the Privacy Act and Privacy Credit Reporting Code (CR Code) to handle personal information related to credit. Avenue Bank may disclose and collect your personal information, including credit-related information from a credit reporting body, collected as part of the application process or provision of services to your entity. The information may be used to assist in assessing credit worthiness, confirming your identity, assessing your application for finance or your capacity to be a guarantor, managing your finance and, if in the instance of a failure to meet your payment obligations in relation to your facility or a serious credit infringement, Avenue Bank may disclose this to the credit reporting body. Any personal information (including credit-related information) disclosed may be used by a credit reporting body in reports provided to credit providers to assist them to assess your credit worthiness. Avenue Bank accesses and discloses credit-related information to the following credit reporting bodies:

Creditor Watch Pty Ltd - www.creditorwatch.com.au

Equifax Pty Limited - www.equifax.com.au

Credit reporting bodies offer a service to credit providers wishing to send direct marketing material about credit services to individuals. This is called "credit pre-screening".

You have the right to request these credit reporting bodies to exclude your credit reporting information from any permissible direct marketing activities they perform (including from credit pre-screening). You should contact each relevant credit reporting body directly if you wish to request this.

Should you believe on reasonable grounds that you have been the victim of fraud or are likely to be, you may request the credit reporting body to not use or disclose your credit reporting information by contacting them directly. Credit reporting bodies must not use or disclose your credit-related information for a period of 21 days after you notify them that you may have been a victim of fraud.

You have the right to request access to the credit-related information that we hold about you, to make a request for us to correct that credit-related information and if needed to lodge a complaint with us about the credit-related information. Should you wish to understand further how Avenue Bank may use and store the credit-related information, how to access, correct or update your credit-related information or how to lodge a complaint, please refer to our Privacy and Credit Reporting Policy.

About this policy

At Avenue, we have great respect for your personal information (including credit-related information) collected as part of the application process or provision of services to your entity, and we want you to have a clear understanding of how Avenue collects, uses and discloses this information, and how we keep it secure. That’s why we’ve created this privacy policy. It applies to any individual whose personal information we have collected or handled, including customers, service providers, contractors, introducers and prospective employees.

It is important to us that you are confident that any personal information we hold about you will be treated in a way which ensures protection of your personal information. We are committed to protecting your personal information by abiding by the Australian Privacy Principles (APPs), the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) (Privacy Act), the Privacy (Credit Reporting) Code 2014 (Credit Reporting Code) and any other relevant law.

Before we start, let’s clarify a few definitions:

  • “we/us/our/Avenue”: this refers to Avenue Bank Limited (ACN 628 073 085) and our related bodies corporate.

  • “you/your”: by this, we mean all Avenue Bank customers, guarantors, and other individuals (such as directors and shareholders) connected with the facilities you hold with Avenue Bank.

  • “Personal information”: this refers to information or an opinion about an identifiable person or someone who could reasonably be identified. The personal information we hold about you may also include credit-related information, which is defined below 

The key areas this policy covers are:

  1. Collecting personal information

  2. Dealing with personal information

  3. Direct marketing

  4. Credit-related information

  5. Accessing and correcting personal information

  6. Security of personal information

  7. Contacting us

Other terms may also apply to you and the information we hold about you. For example, sometimes we also provide a privacy collection statement at the time we collect personal information from you, which may include additional terms. Or, if you are employed by Avenue, you may have specific privacy terms in your employment contract with us.

This privacy policy was last updated on (20 April 2022). We’ll continue to update the policy in line with any changes we make to our processes and systems related to the handling of your personal information. You can find the most recent copy of the policy at (avenuebank.com.au). You may also request this policy in an alternative form by contacting us.

1. Collecting personal information

The kinds of personal information we collect and hold

As a restricted authorised deposit taking institution, we collect and hold personal information about you. To satisfy our legal obligations, we may need to hold on to this information after a transaction, or after our relationship with you has ended – but we won’t retain it for any longer than is reasonably necessary and permitted under Australian privacy laws.

The types of personal information we collect and hold may vary depending on the nature of our interactions with you, but may include anything on the list below.

  • your full name

  • your date of birth

  • residential address

  • contact details

  • government issued identifiers (such as your tax file number)

  • financial information

  • banking details (including account details)

  • employment information

  • drivers licence number

  • assets and liabilities

  • transaction and repayment history information

  • credit-related information (discussed further below)

  • information about your preferences relevant to any marketing activities

  • sensitive information, such as:

    • membership of a professional or trade association or union

    • any other information we may need to identify you

Sensitive information

We will only collect sensitive information about you with your consent. Sensitive information is personal information that includes information relating to your racial or ethnic origin, political persuasion, memberships in trade or professional associations or trade unions, sexual preferences, criminal record, or health.

How we collect your personal information

There are a few ways we may collect your personal information, either from you directly, or from a third party. Where reasonable and practical, we will collect your personal information directly from you.

The ways we may collect information directly include:

  • via our website (such as when you fill in a form)

  • over the phone (for example, when you speak to a client services representative)

  • when you submit any application with us

  • when you apply for employment with us

We may also collect your personal information from a third party. These third parties include (but aren’t limited to):

  • credit reporting bodies

  • introducers (who refer you to Avenue) including mortgage or finance brokers

  • current or past employers

  • referees

  • government bodies

  • other financial institutions and credit providers

  • people authorised to act on your behalf

  • sources of publicly available information (such as social media)

  • third party service providers and / or suppliers

  • recruitment consultants.

Rest assured, we’ll only collect personal information from third parties when you have given us authority to do so, and when it’s impracticable for us to collect it directly from you. 

What happens if your personal information is not provided to us?

Without access to your personal information, we may not be able to process your application or provide services to you.

2. Dealing with personal information

Why do we need your personal information?

There are a number of reasons we may need to collect, hold, use and disclose your personal information –these will depend on our relationship with you, and whether you’re a business or individual. For example, we may need personal information to:

  • verify your identity

  • assess an application for our products and services

  • provide you with our products and services

  • contact you

  • manage our risk

  • help detect fraud

  • assess how suitable you are as a service provider

  • collect overdue payments

  • report to various credit reporting bodies

  • research, develop and expand our products and services

  • recruit staff and contractors

  • comply with applicable laws

  • manage our relationship with you.

We may also collect your personal information for the purposes of direct marketing. Improvements in technology also enable organisations like ours to collect and use information to get a more integrated view of our customers. We may offer you other products and services from time to time.

How we protect your personal information

Keeping your personal information safe is of the utmost importance to us at Avenue – and we have put in place a range of measures and reasonable steps to protect your personal information. We may store your personal information in paper and electronic form. We will also take reasonable steps to protect any personal information from misuse, interference, loss, unauthorised access, or modification. These include:

  • security measures that control access to our premises, documents and systems

  • confidentiality requirements and staff education around the importance of privacy and data security

  • limiting access to personal information to those with a legitimate need

  • keeping our systems protected with appropriate technology solutions.

When we may disclose your personal information (and who to)

For the reasons mentioned above, we may need to share your information with a range of different people and organisations. These include:

  • introducers (who have referred you to Avenue), such as landlords, leasing agents, tenant advisors, real estate consultants or advisors, business brokers, financial planners, accountants, business associations, mortgage brokers and finance brokers;

  • service providers, including customer service organisations, payment processors, call centres, mailing houses, identification verification services, researchers, collections agents, marketing organisations, data analysts and software service companies;

  • credit reporting bodies or other businesses or organisations that provide credit-related information or credit risk assessment services consistent with Australian laws;

  • prospective funders or other intermediaries in relation to your finance requirements;

    associated businesses that may want to market products to you;

  • companies that provide information and infrastructure systems to us;

  • anyone where you have provided us consent;

  • other guarantors or borrowers (if more than one);

  • borrowers or prospective borrowers, including in relation to any credit you guarantee or propose to guarantee;

  • our auditors, insurers, and health care providers;

  • claims related providers, such as assessors and investigators who help us with claims;

  • investors, agents or advisers, trustees, rating agencies or any entity that has an interest in your finance or our business;

  • other financial institutions, government bodies and banks;

    or identity verification services;

  • organisations that provide products or services used or marketed by us;

    organisations through which you choose to make payments to us;

  • any current employee;

  • your employer;

  • your nominated referees;

  • other organisations as required or authorised by law (for example to government or regulatory bodies).

Prior to disclosing any of your personal information to another person or organisation, we will take all reasonable steps to satisfy ourselves that:

  • a) the person or organisation has a commitment to protecting your personal information at least equal to our commitment; or

  • b) you have consented to us making the disclosure

Disclosing information overseas

While we try to store your personal information locally, there may be times when we need to disclose it to service providers located overseas. While it’s not practicable to list every country in these service providers may be located, it’s likely some will be in India and Europe – so please be aware that your personal and credit information may be disclosed to these countries. In these instances, rest assured we always take proper steps to secure and protect your personal information, wherever its being stored.

3. Direct marketing

One of the reasons we may use your personal information is to contact you about products and services we think you might be interested in. These may be our own products and services, or they may be from one of our related bodies or a third party we have an arrangement with – and in all cases, they will have been carefully selected for you. These communications, which we refer to as direct marketing, may be in the form of a phone call, text message, email or other digital formats including targeted advertising.

Consenting to receiving marketing material

By working with Avenue Bank, or becoming one of our customers, you consent to your personal information being used for direct marketing unless you opt out. You can do this at any time by:

  • calling us on 1300 283 265

  • emailing us at contact@avenuebank.com.au

  • ‘ticking the box’ on the relevant form when you apply for one of our products

  • using the ‘unsubscribe’ function that appears at the bottom of email communications

We’ll ensure your request is actioned within 5 working days, after which you’ll stop receiving direct marketing. 

Excluding your credit reporting information

Credit reporting bodies offer a service to credit providers wishing to send direct marketing material about credit services to individuals. This is called "credit pre-screening". You have the right to request these credit reporting bodies to exclude your credit reporting information from any permissible direct marketing activities they perform (including credit pre-screening). You should contact each relevant credit reporting body directly if you wish to request this.

To provide you with an Avenue Bank product or service, we may need to obtain credit-related information about you from credit reporting bodies. This includes information related to your dealings with other credit providers and other third parties (for example, details you’ve supplied to a bank when applying for a loan), as well as credit eligibility information.

Credit-related information means both:

  • credit information, which includes:

    • identification information, such as your name, address, date of birth or employer

    • commercial credit liability information (i.e. information about the commercial credit accounts you may hold or have held with a variety of credit providers)

    • consumer credit liability information (i.e. information about consumer credit accounts you hold, or have held with a variety of credit providers including the type, terms and maximum amount of credit provided to you, when that credit was provided and when it was repaid)

    • repayment history information (i.e. whether you have paid on time)

    • details of previous credit enquiries or applications you’ve made

    • default information (specifically, information on overdue amounts which have been overdue for greater than 60 days and greater than $150)

    • payment information

    • new arrangement information

    • details of any serious credit infringements

    • details of any credit-related court proceedings such as summons or judgements

    • personal insolvency information (i.e. whether you’ve been bankrupt)

    • publicly available information

  • credit eligibility information, which refers to any credit scores, risk ratings and other evaluations about you that credit reporting bodies have derived from the information above. This information relates primarily to your credit-related dealings with other credit providers, and it may include:

    • credit scores risk ratings and other evaluations about you

    • credit reporting information provided by credit reporting bodies

    • credit worthiness information that we derive using credit information.

The credit-related information we hold about you may be held by us in electronic form on our secure servers and may also be held in paper form. We may use cloud storage to store this credit-related information. The cloud storage and the IT servers may be located outside Australia.

How we handle your credit-related information

If we ever collect, hold, use or disclose your credit-related information, it will only be if it’s necessary for our business activities. When doing so, we’ll always ensure we adhere to the restrictions that apply under the Privacy Act (for example, credit eligibility information can only be disclosed to a credit provider, and there are restrictions in how this information is used for direct marketing).

Reasons we may need to access your credit-information include:

  • to assess applications for Avenue Bank products and services, and accept guarantors

  • internal management purposes, including securitisation, risk management, and portfolio analysis

  • to assist in the collection of overdue payments

  • to help prevent defaults and deal with financial hardship

  • to deal with complaints and legal proceedings

  • to meet our legal and regulatory requirements (such as reporting matters to regulators or enforcement bodies when authorised or required by law)

  • to assist other credit providers as permitted by the Privacy Act.

If you propose to be a guarantor, one of our checks may involve obtaining a credit report about you.

Credit reporting bodies

Please be aware that we may also disclose credit-related information relating to your dealings with us (including any defaults on payments or serious credit infringements) to credit reporting bodies. In turn, these reporting bodies may include that information in reports to other credit providers who are assessing your credit worthiness.

We exchange credit-related information with the following credit reporting bodies:

CreditorWatch Pty Ltd

Website: https://creditorwatch.com.au/

Postal address: GPO Box 276, Sydney, NSW, 2001.,

Equifax Australia Information Services and Solutions Pty Ltd

Website: www.equifax.com.au

Postal address: PO Box 964, North Sydney, NSW 2059

Each of these bodies is required to have a policy which explains how they will manage your credit reporting information – to view these policies, please visit their respective websites and follow the "Privacy" links or contact them directly for further information.

Disclosing credit-related information overseas

We may disclose your credit-related information to overseas entities that provide support functions to us. You may obtain more information about these entities by contacting us. If we disclose your credit-related information to entities that are located overseas, we ensure that appropriate data handling and security arrangements are in place.

Updating your personal information

It is important to us that the personal information we hold about you is accurate and up to date. During the course of our relationship with you, we may ask you to inform us if any of your personal information has changed.

If you wish to make any changes to your personal information, you may contact us. We will generally rely on you to ensure that the information we hold about you is accurate or complete.

Accessing your personal and credit-related information

It’s your right to access any personal and credit-related information we currently hold about you. If you’d like to request something simple (such as checking the address we have on file), it’s best to speak to our Customer Service team. If you have a more complex enquiry, we recommend submitting it in writing to make sure we respond accurately.

Depending on the type of request that you make, we may respond to your request immediately. Otherwise, we usually provide the information within 7 days of receiving your request. We may need to contact other entities to properly investigate your request.

A small admin fee may apply to retrieving information – we’ll let you know in advance if this applies to you.

There are a few reasons why we may be unable to grant your request – and if any of these apply, we’ll advise you in writing. For example, we may deny your request if disclosing the information:

  • is not allowed by law

  • may pose a threat to the health or safety of an individual or the public

  • may have an unreasonable impact on someone else’s privacy

  • may reveal internal information relating to a commercially sensitive decision-making process.

Making a correction

We take reasonable steps to ensure that personal or credit-related information we hold is accurate, complete, and kept up to date. For this reason, we ask you to let us know as soon as possible if any of your information changes, such as your address or phone number.

If you consider that any information, we hold about you is incorrect in any way, you’re welcome to request a correction. Just keep in mind that there are certain situations where we may not agree to make your requested correction – if this occurs, we’ll let you know in writing, and explain our reason why.

If appropriate, we will correct the personal or credit-related information at the time of your request. Otherwise, we will provide an initial response to you within seven days of receiving your request. Where reasonable, and after our investigation, we will provide you with details about whether we have corrected your personal or credit-related information within 30 days.

We may need to consult with other finance providers or credit reporting bodies or entities as part of our investigation.

To request access to the information we hold about you, or to request a correction, you can:

Complaints

If you believe that we’ve failed to comply with the Privacy Act (including credit reporting requirements in Part IIIA) or the Credit Reporting Code, please contact our complaints team. From there, we will follow our internal dispute resolution process – you can find further details on this process here.

To get in touch with our complaints team:

If your complaint remains unresolved after Avenue Bank have reviewed and responded, you can refer it to a recognised external dispute resolution scheme ("EDR"). Avenue Bank is a member of the Australian Financial Complaints Authority ("AFCA"), which independently and impartially resolves disputes between customers and participating members on matters including Privacy and Credit Reporting. AFCA’s contact details are:

Australian Financial Complaints Authority

GPO Box 3

Melbourne Victoria 3001

Australia

Phone: 1800 931 678

Email: info@afca.org.au

Website: www.afca.org.au

Alternatively, you can refer the matter to the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (the "OAIC"). Their contact details are:

The Office of the Australian Information Commissioner

GPO Box 2999

Canberra ACT 2601

Australia

Phone: 1300 363 992

Fax: 02 9284 9666

Website: www.oaic.gov.au

Can you contact us anonymously?

You’re welcome to contact us anonymously or using a pseudonym with general comments or questions – however, if your enquiry is specific to an account (or relates to your personal information), we’ll need to identify you before we can engage in further discussions and correspondence.

6. Security, websites and cookies

Protecting your personal information

At Avenue Bank, we take reasonable steps to keep your personal information safe from loss, unauthorised activity, or other misuse. As well as following industry standard information security frameworks and best practices, we regularly assess our technology operations and partners to ensure compliance to our internal policies. We also make sure our staff are appropriately trained on privacy and information security.

Protecting your personal information is a responsibility you also share – so if you become aware of any security breaches relating to your account or your personal information, contact us right away.

Tracking information on the web

For statistical purposes, we collect information on our website activity – including the number of users who visit our website, the date and time of visits, the number of pages viewed and navigation patterns. We also gather information on which countries, systems and other websites through which our website is accessed. We obtain this information by using 'cookies' (explained further below) as well as third party systems.

Our website may also contain links to other websites, provided for your convenience. While we try to link only to sites that share our high standards and respect for privacy, we are not able to guarantee the privacy practices of other websites – and they may differ from ours.

Cookies

A 'cookie' is a packet of information that allows a website to identify and interact more effectively with a computer. Cookies don’t identify you personally, but they do identify your browser type and Internet service provider.

Cookies are widely used on websites and for direct marketing purposes to help with navigation, monitor usage and to help personalise the user experience – and we may use cookies for all these reasons, particularly to enhance your experience.

Your browser can be individually set to accept all cookies, reject all cookies, or notify when a cookie is sent. Just keep in mind that if you reject cookies, there may be limits on how our website can be used. For more information on the use of cookies, please refer to the privacy policies of the websites that install them.

Website advertising

From time to time, we place advertisements on other websites. This may involve installing a cookie on a computer when our advertisement is viewed – which simply allows us to keep track of how many unique visitors we have to our site, and which advertisements they clicked through from. In turn, this allows us to measure the effectiveness of different advertisements.

To evaluate the effectiveness of our website advertising, we also may use third parties to collect statistical data. No personal data is collected on these occasions.

7. Contacting us

If you have any questions about this privacy and credit reporting policy or how we manage your personal or credit-related information, feel free to contact our operations team by:

Or, if you’d rather contact our Privacy Officer, here are the details: