Privacy policy

Last updated 22/11/2017

Financial Counselling Australia Ltd (FCA) respects and values your privacy. This document describes the policies and practices which apply to personal information collected by FCA on the FCA website and on the Toolkit website (Toolkit).  FCA is committed to protecting your privacy and will comply with this privacy policy and the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) in relation to any personal information it holds. 

1. What kinds of information does FCA collect and hold?

The types of information FCA collects and holds about you can include:

2. How does FCA collect information?

2.1 Directly from you

Your privacy is important to FCA. We will always try to collect information directly from you, unless it is unreasonable or impractical. If you keep your contact details up-to-date, it is easier for us to contact you directly when we need to.

FCA will directly collect your information from the following sources:

2.2 From other sources

FCA may sometimes collect information about you from other sources. We only do this if it is necessary. Situations where it may be necessary include:

2.3 When you use the website

FCA uses both cookies and web analytics to improve your experience of the FCA website and the Toolkit. Cookies and web analytics collect your IP address. An IP address may be used to identify the computer accessing the site, and may indirectly identify you.

While you can disable cookies, some features of the FCA website and the Toolkit may not work if you do so.  Neither FCA nor our service providers, which include the designer of our website and Google, retain or use any information about your use of the FCA website or the Toolkit for any purpose other than delivering the functions of the relevant website.

FCA uses Google Analytics to provide feedback on usage of the various websites. Google Analytics does not share actual IP address information with FCA. For further information on what information Google analytics collects and shares with FCA, see Google's page on Safeguarding Your Data.

3. How does FCA use and disclose personal information?

FCA generally uses the personal information it collects from you for the purpose notified to you at the time of collection. For example, FCA uses and discloses your personal information to provide you with the services available through the Toolkit and to assist with your queries. 

We may also use and disclose your personal information for the purposes described in section 4 below.

4. To whom does FCA disclose your personal information and why?

4.1 Professional Development and Supervision

If you choose to record details of your professional development and supervision, then:

have access this information.

This allows FCA Administrators to manage any problems and update your records. 

State Administrators can assess whether you have met membership requirements.  

4.2 Access by Approved Service Providers

The Toolkit allows selected financial institutions, creditors, service providers and government departments and agencies (collectively, Approved Service Providers) to search for your name, contact details and NRN. This enables them to verify that they are dealing with a bona fide financial counsellor. This also assists these organisations in contacting you.  

Access by these Approved Service Providers is password-protected. An Approved Service Provider must enter into an agreement with FCA before it is added to the list and given access to the website. Approved Service Providers are also bound by our Terms of Use for Approved Service Providers, which is available here.

4.3 Site Administration 

FCA Administrators and State Administrators are able to view user profiles and generate reports regarding the use of the FCA website and the Toolkit, including information you record about your supervision and professional development. 

4.4 Heartburst

Our web company is Heartburst, based in Melbourne, Victoria. Your information may be disclosed to Heartburst for the purpose of the services (such as website hosting and data storage) Heartburst provides to FCA.

5. Will FCA disclose your information to overseas recipients?

FCA may disclose your personal information outside Australia. This may occur where Approved Service Providers have websites or staff or contractors overseas. Please refer to the privacy policies of Approved Service Providers for further information. 

6. How does FCA hold the information it collects?

The information we collect is held electronically and backed up daily by our web company, Heartburst.

Access to the information is subject to approval, and Approved Service Providers will be required to sign information use agreements before they are allowed to access the information. 

FCA only permanently deletes a record if asked to do so by the individual to which it relates. 

If you are no longer a user of the Toolkit website or a member of your state peak association, we will suspend your account and ensure it is not-visible to non-administrators. 

7. How can you access personal information held by FCA about you? How can you have such personal information corrected?

You have the right to access what information FCA holds about you and to request correction of that information. To exercise these rights, contact us at

If you're a member of the Toolkit, you can access some of the information FCA holds about you, and correct it, via the 'My Profile' link. 

8. How can you complain about how your information has been handled? 

You have the right to complain about how FCA is handling your information. 

If you have a complaint, question or concern about your information, please contact us at We will try to resolve your complaint or query within a reasonable time.

If your complaint has not been resolved to your satisfaction or you still have a concern, you can contact the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner in any of the following ways: