• Privacy

    The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) is a government agency bound by the Privacy Act 1988 in terms of collection and handling of personal information and tax file numbers (TFNs).

    All specific privacy notices about personal information sent to us, is located on our website.

    For further information about privacy law notices for the Business Portal transactions, see ato.gov.au/privacy  

    Operation of this website

    Our ATO staff operate this website.

    Risks of using the internet

    You should note there are inherent risks associated with transmitting information via the internet. Therefore, you should make your own assessment of the potential risks to the security of your information when deciding whether or not to use this website. There are other ways to manage business if you do not wish to use public networks such as the internet.

    Refer to the Portal security guidelines for details about the encryption and other specifications used by the Business Portal.

    Collection of personal information

    Legal authority

    We are authorised to collect information on the Business Portal under one or more of the following Acts:

    • A New Tax System (Australian Business Number) Act 1999 
    • Income Tax Assessment Act 1936 
    • Income Tax Assessment Act 1997 
    • A New Tax System (Goods and Services Tax) Act 1999 
    • A New Tax System (Wine Equalisation Tax) Act 1999 
    • A New Tax System (Luxury Car Tax) Act 1999 
    • Energy Grants Credits Scheme Act 2003 
    • Superannuation Industry (Supervision) Act 1993 
    • Product Grants and Benefits Administration Act 2000 
    • Fringe Benefits Tax Assessment Act 1986 
    • Taxation Administration Act 1953. 

    We use the information collected on the portal to help administer these laws. Some of this information may be provided to other agencies that are authorised by law to receive it. These agencies include law enforcement bodies such as the Australian Crime Commission and state and federal police, state and federal revenue agencies, assistance agencies such as Centrelink and the Child Support Agency as well as other agencies such as the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

    Information about portal users

    If you provide an email address for the purpose of using the email notification facility for portal messages we will:

    • record your email address
    • use this information only for the purpose for which it was provided, not for any other purpose
    • not add your email address to a mailing list unless specifically requested
    • not disclose this information to any other person without your consent, except in the unlikely event of an investigation or similar circumstances where disclosure is authorised by law.

    If you are a primary or secondary user of a portal access we will:

    • record your user ID, client name and a list of functions you are authorised to access
    • record a list of your authorised functions available to the primary user (if you are a secondary user of a portal access)
    • use this information only for the purpose for which it was provided
    • not disclose this information to any other person without your consent, except in the unlikely event of an investigation or similar circumstances where disclosure is authorised by law.

    Information on the Australian Business Register

    If your business is registered on the Australian Business Register (ABR), certain information collected on the portal will be used to update your entry on the register. Some of the information on the ABR is publicly available. This includes:

    • Australian business number (ABN)
    • ABN status (date of effect of the ABN registration)
    • entity name
    • entity type (such as company, sole trader, trust)
    • trading name (trading or business name)
    • state (from the address provided as the main business address)
    • postcode (from the address provided as the main business address)
    • GST registration (status and date of effect)
    • deductible gift recipient status and date of effect (if applicable)
    • Australian Company Number or Australian Registered Body Number (if applicable)
    • the date of an ABN change (if the Registrar has changed the entity’s ABN)
    • the date of ABN cancellation (if the Registrar has cancelled the entity’s registration in the Australian Business Register (ABR))
    • an entity’s endorsement to access charity tax concessions and date of effect (if applicable).

    This information will allow members of the public to find out whether they are dealing with registered entities, whether those entities are registered for GST, whether those entities are endorsed to access charity tax concessions, or whether gifts made to those entities are tax deductible.

    Some or all of this information may be regularly provided in bulk using internet or alternate electronic means to third parties. A fee to cover the administrative costs of providing this information may be charged for this service.

    A printout of this information is also available as a certified extract of the Australian Business Register.

    • Visit abr.gov.au  
    • Phone 13 28 66 between 8.00am and 6.00pm, Monday to Friday.
     

    In exceptional circumstances, you can request suppression of certain information that would otherwise be made available to the public. These circumstances include cases where a person holds fears for their own safety or of their family, in much the same way as people can have their details suppressed from the electoral roll.

    If you want to apply to the Registrar to withhold some of the details available to the public about the entity, provide a letter detailing the information to be suppressed, a copy of any supporting material and the reasons for the suppression.

    Mail this information with the application to:

    The Assistant Registrar
    Australian Business Register
    PO Box 421
    HURSTVILLE BC NSW 1481 

    Other disclosures of ABR information

    The remainder of information in your ABR record, includes:

    • the name and contact details of authorised contact persons (except for contact details of complying superannuation funds)
    • tax file numbers
    • telephone numbers
    • all business activity details (such as staffing and ownership details)
    • all taxation information (such as financial institution account details for ATO refunds, goods and services tax details, including annual turnover)
    • details of individuals and organisations associated with the entity.

    This information is not publicly available. However, it may be provided to other government agencies as authorised by law.

    Government agencies authorised to receive ABR information

    The ABN has been implemented in response to requests from business for a single number to streamline their interactions with all levels of government. To help businesses and government interact more easily under certain circumstances, the Registrar may disclose information provided by the entity to other Australian Government, state, territory and local government agencies, including bodies established by law for a public purpose or specifically prescribed by regulation. Examples include Australian Government and state departments, statutory agencies, local councils and other authorities such as the Office of the Employment Advocate, the Australian Trade Commission and the various WorkCover organisations.


    • See abr.gov.au for details of government agencies regularly receiving information from the Australian Business Register.
    • For a printed version of this information, phone 13 28 66 between 8.00am and 6.00pm, Monday to Friday.
     

    Register of complying superannuation funds

    In addition to information from the ABR, some details of a complying superannuation fund will be made available through the register of complying superannuation funds (ROCS).

    ROCS is a publicly available list of all complying superannuation funds, approved deposit funds and eligible rollover funds regulated by the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority, and self-managed super funds regulated by the ATO. Subject to the stated disclaimers, the purpose of the list is to:

    • provide fund contact details
    • determine whether a fund is an eligible fund for superannuation guarantee purposes
    • facilitate the transfer of superannuation monies between funds.

    We are authorised by the Superannuation Industry (Supervision) Act 1993 to collect and disclose this information.

    If you want to apply to the Registrar to withhold some of the details available to the public about the entity, provide a letter detailing the information to be suppressed, a copy of any supporting material and the reasons for the suppression.

    You can mail this information with the application to:

    The Assistant Registrar
    Australian Business Register
    PO Box 421
    HURSTVILLE BC NSW 1481 

    Tax file numbers

    Although we are authorised by taxation law, including the Taxation Administration Act 1953, to ask you to provide your TFN, you are not compelled to provide this information.

    This information is used to correctly identify you. Quoting your TFN reduces the risk of administrative errors that may delay the processing of your request.

    Logging your visit

    When visiting this portal, a record of your visit is logged. The following information is recorded for statistical purposes. We use it to help improve the portal. This information is supplied by your browser:

    • your server address
    • your operating system (for example, Windows, Mac)
    • your top level domain name (for example, .com, .gov, .au, .uk)
    • the date and time of your visit to the portal
    • the pages accessed and the documents downloaded
    • the previous site visited
    • the type of browser used.

    Apart from monitoring the portal to detect unauthorised or inappropriate use, and subject to the collection of information referred to in the ‘Information about portal users’ section, no other attempt will be made to identify users or their browsing activities. The exception to this is in the unlikely event of an investigation, where a law enforcement agency may exercise a warrant to inspect the internet web-server logs.

    Cookies

    Cookies are pieces of information that a website can transfer to an individual's computer for record keeping. Cookies can make websites easier to use by temporarily storing information about your preferences or current selections on a particular website.

    This portal only uses ‘session cookies’, which are stored in your browser and deleted from your computer when you close the browser window. These cookies retain details of selections you have made as you navigate through the web portal.

    Most internet browsers are pre-set to accept cookies. If you prefer not to receive cookies, you can adjust your internet browser to refuse them or to warn you when cookies are being used. Note that if you do not accept cookies when they are offered, this web portal will not perform as designed and you will most likely experience web portal behaviour that appears as an error.

    Physical security of data

    Under the Privacy Act 1988, Information Privacy Principle 4 regulates storage and security of personal information.

    Secure Socket Layer (SSL) encryption protects information passing between the user and us while the user remains on the secure website.

    For more information about SSL, visit The World Wide Web Consortium and search 'SSL', or browse 'Security FAQs'.

    Data storage and security arrangements 

    • Data sent between us and the user in these applications is encrypted using SSL.
    • To safeguard the integrity of the applications, the website makes back-up tapes. These are retained in a highly secured environment for a period of up to two weeks.
    • Completed transaction details are stored in a highly secured environment indefinitely.
    • Incomplete applications are stored for a maximum of seven days in a highly secured environment.
    • Voluntary site feedback will be archived indefinitely.

    Data quality

    Under the Privacy Act 1988, Information Privacy Principles 7 and 8 regulate data quality. Users should note the website relies on the accuracy of data they enter.

    If you have concerns about privacy


    • Visit the Privacy Commissioner’s website, oaic.gov.au  
    • Phone us on 13 28 66 between 8.00am and 6.00pm, Monday to Friday.
     

     


Relying on our information - our commitment to you

We are committed to providing you with advice and guidance you can rely on, so we make every effort to ensure that what we give you is correct.

If you follow our advice or guidance and it turns out to be incorrect, or it is misleading and you make a mistake as a result, we will take that into account when determining what action, if any, we should take.

Some of the advice and guidance on this website applies to a specific financial year. This is clearly marked. Make sure you have the information for the right year before making decisions based on that information.

If you feel that our advice and guidance does not fully cover your circumstances, or you are unsure how it applies to you, contact us or seek professional advice.

Copyright

© Australian Taxation Office for the Commonwealth of Australia

You are free to copy, adapt, modify, transmit and distribute this material as you wish (but not in any way that suggests the ATO or the Commonwealth endorses you or any of your services or products).