Privacy Woes?
The use of image capturing devices under the RMA

With an increasing focus on the importance of the privacy of individuals, the use of image capturing devices within the compliance, monitoring and enforcement functions of local authorities has become ever more challenging. Although the use of such devices may enable councils to more effectively discharge their statutory obligations, they create exposure to regulatory and compliance scrutiny. Even after personal information is collected, the evidential and legal issues arising from its collection are almost limitless.

Using case studies and analysing relevant legislation, this presentation will discuss the lawfulness of using image capturing devices and the responsibilities of local authorities to ensure the privacy of individuals is maintained. When these devices are not used appropriately, issues undoubtedly arise. This presentation focuses on practical tips to assist councils in the context of responding to environmental incidents and conducting investigations.

The potential for privacy breaches to occur by operation of image capturing devices demonstrates the need for councils to engender trust with the public. It is critical that investigators have a clear understanding on the lawful use of such devices and the steps that can be taken to avoid unwanted intrusion into the privacy of individuals.


Thursday  7th December, 2:40pm (60min)


Tim McGuigan
Senior Associate, Wynn Williams


Tim is a Senior Associate in the Dispute Resolution team at Wynn Williams. He specialises in regulatory and public law litigation, including prosecuting on behalf of Environment Canterbury and Environment Southland. Prior to joining Wynn Williams, Tim spent several years working at the Office of the Auckland Crown Solicitor where he prosecuted on behalf of diverse government agencies, including the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, the Ministry for Primary Industries