Surveillance Devices Law

NT - Tracking, Data and Reporting

Tracking Devices

Section 13 prohibits a person form installing, using or maintaining a tracking device to determine the geographical location of a person or thing, without the consent of the person being tracked or the person in lawful control of the thing being tracked. A breach of this section is an offence punishable by a fine or imprisonment of up to two years. Exceptions are listed in sub-section 2, but none are of relevance to civilian law enforcement. See the discussion on tracking devices under its own heading, in the Confluent Issues section, above.

 

Data Surveillance Devices

Section 14 contains restrictions on the use of data surveillance devices by police and suchlike, but does not restrict their use by civilians. This is not to imply that no other Act or case law rule exists to restrict civilian use of such. Interestingly the definition of data surveillance devices in Section 3 does not incorporate software and only focuses on physical devices.

 

Communication and Publication

Section 15 provides that it is an offence to communicate or publish a record or report on a private conversation or activity, where the person doing so knows that the record or report was created through the use of a listening device, optical surveillance device or tracking device. A breach of this provision is an offence punishable by a fine or up to two years’ imprisonment.

 

Sub-section 2 lists exceptions including a communication or publication:

 

  • that is reasonably necessary in the public interest or for protecting the lawful interests of the person making it

  • in the course of a legal or disciplinary proceeding...

Publication in the course of a legal proceeding appears to refer to where a matter has been lodged with a court or is going through some other legal process, rather than when litigation or suchlike is merely in contemplation. The term, disciplinary proceeding, occurs once in relation to public officers, but apart from that there is no assistance.

 

Public Interest

Publication in the course of a legal proceeding appears to refer to where a matter has been lodged with a court or is going through some other legal process, rather than when litigation or suchlike is merely in contemplation. The term, disciplinary proceeding, occurs once in relation to public officers, but apart from that there is no assistance.