Govt agrees to establish a consumer data right

Commerce and Consumer Affairs

The Government has agreed to establish a consumer data right framework for New Zealand, Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister David Clark announced today.

“Consumers should be in the driver’s seat when it comes to how their personal information is used by third parties,” David Clark said.

A consumer data right (CDR) is a mechanism that requires data holders, such as banks and electricity retailers, to safely and securely share data with third parties (like fintech companies) following consent from the customer. This means New Zealanders gain access to a wider range of products and services that better meet their needs.

“Any data shared through the consumer data right will only take place with a person’s informed consent, and would be strictly used for the reasons agreed upon. For example, if a person was seeking financial advice, they could ask their bank to share data, such as transaction information, with their chosen adviser,” David Clark said.

“The businesses and services wishing to receive this data would also have to meet a number of safeguards to ensure the information could be handled safely and securely.

“It’s also my intention that the consumer data right will work hand-in-hand with the Digital Identity Trust Framework announced earlier this year. It’s that piece of work which sets out the rules for the delivery of digital identity services,” David Clark said.

Following a recent consultation on options for a consumer data right, the Government is now in the process of building a regulatory regime.

“The consumer data right will be rolled out on a sector-by-sector basis to ensure that the detailed requirements work in practice. We will look to align our system with the Australian model introduced in 2019,” David Clark said.

Officials are carrying out work to identify which sectors should be considered for designation first.

The Government aims to make a second round of detailed policy decisions on the consumer data right framework later in 2021, and will look to introduce legislation in 2022.

More information is available on the Ministry of Businesses, Innovation and Employment’s website.