With news of Cambridge Analytica using the information of 50 million Facebook users to help Donald Trump's 2016 presidential campaign emerging this week, Australia's Information and Privacy Commissioner Timothy Pilgrim has announced he is looking into whether any personal information of Australians was involved.
In a statement on Tuesday, Pilgrim said the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) is aware of the reports stating users' Facebook profile information was acquired and used without authorisation and is "making inquiries" with Facebook on the matter.
"I will consider Facebook's response and whether any further regulatory action is required," Pilgrim wrote.
"The Privacy Act 1988 confers a range of privacy regulatory powers which include powers to investigate an alleged interference with privacy and enforcement powers ranging from less serious to more serious regulatory action, including powers to accept an enforceable undertaking, make a determination, or apply to the court for a civil penalty order for a breach of a civil penalty provision."
Calling on Facebook to confirm if the data of Australians was involved, Shadow Attorney-General and Shadow Minister for National Security Mark Dreyfus told ABC Radio National on Monday afternoon that he was concerned and wants to hear of the local relevance from the social media giant.
"All of these digital platforms have gradually had to be brought into a regulatory environment. There was a myth for a while that they were somehow existing in a free space and shouldn't be subject to ordinary laws, in particular, ordinary laws about privacy that we've had in Australia for many years," he said.
"I want to hear from Facebook whether it's anyone in Australia