1800 413 828


The Small Business Debt Helpline (the Helpline) is a service provided by Financial Counselling Australia Limited (ABN 67 073 167 361) (We/us). We are committed to managing personal information in accordance with the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) and the Australian Privacy Principles. This document applies to us in respect of our provision of the Helpline service. It sets out our privacy policy in accordance with APP 1.3 and notifies individuals of the collection of personal information in accordance with APP 5.2. 

What kinds of personal information do we collect and hold? 

We collect and hold personal information (including sensitive information) as defined by s6(1) of the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth). 

Personal information is information or an opinion about an identified individual, or an individual who is reasonably identifiable. Examples of personal information include an individual’s name, address, contact details, occupation and financial and tax information. 

Sensitive information is a subset of personal information and is defined as:  

  • information or an opinion (that is also personal information) about an individual’s:  
  • racial or ethnic origin  
  • political opinions  
  • membership of a political association  
  • religious beliefs or affiliations  
  • philosophical beliefs  
  • membership of a professional or trade association  
  • membership of a trade union  
  • sexual orientation or practices, or  
  • criminal record  
  • health information about an individual  
  • genetic information (that is not otherwise health information)  
  • biometric information that is to be used for the purpose of automated biometric verification or biometric identification, or  
  • biometric templates.  

How do we collect and hold personal information? 

We collect your personal information from you when you directly provide it to us verbally or in writing, or from other material you provide to us. With your consent we may also collect your personal information from other sources, for example during the course of communicating with a third party such as a bank, insurer or government body, for the purpose of providing you with a financial counselling service.   

We hold your personal information securely in electronic and hard copy form, including in audio recordings of telephone calls with you. We may also hold your personal information in secure storage devices provided by third parties, such as computer servers or archival warehouses. 

We take all reasonable steps to protect personal information we hold from misuse, interference and loss, and from unauthorised access, modification or disclosure. 

For what purposes do we collect, hold, use and disclose personal information? 

We collect, hold, use and disclose personal information if it is reasonably required for the purpose of providing the Helpline service, or if it is required by law (for example if a court orders us to do so), or in emergencies where life, health or safety of any person is at risk. 

We may collect, hold and use your personal information for the purpose of obtaining feedback on the quality of service we have provided to you or otherwise for monitoring and improving the quality of our service, for preparing analysis of data, for risk management, or for preparing policy studies. Please advise us if you do not want us to use your personal information in this way and we will not do so. 

We may wish to disclose your personal information to a third party for the purpose of inviting you to participate in research or other evaluation activities but we will seek your consent before doing so.  

We may prepare and disclose anonymous case studies based on information provided by you, but we will not disclose your personal information by doing this.  

If we are unable to collect personal information from an individual we may not be able to provide the Helpline service to that individual. 

Access to and correction of personal information 

We take all reasonable steps to ensure that personal information is accurate, up to date and complete. We must, upon your request, give you access to personal information we hold about you. If we hold personal information about you which is inaccurate, out of date, incomplete, irrelevant or misleading, and you seek correction of that information, we will take reasonable steps to correct that information. However, for professional reasons, including checking conflicts of interest and insurance requirements, we will not be able to delete your name and contact details from our financial counselling service database. 


If you have any concerns about our use of your information, please discuss these with us. We will always try to resolve them with you.  You can contact us, make a complaint, or seek more details about this site or our privacy policies by: 

  • Phoning 1800 413 828 
  • Emailing
  • Writing to:
    Small Business Debt Helpline
    Financial Counselling Australia
    Level 6, 179 Queen Street
    Melbourne  VIC  3000 

You have the right to complain about alleged breaches of privacy to the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) See or call 1300 363 992. 

Overseas disclosure 

We are not likely to disclose personal information to overseas recipients. All personal information we hold is to the best of our knowledge held on servers located in Australia or otherwise physically held in Australia.