Most M&A transactions require parties to exchange at least some personal information, whether it is the seller's employee or customer personal information. Addressing privacy compliance at an early stage of the M&A transaction allows sufficient time for remedial steps, both in terms of the transaction and the target's compliance, to be taken.
While privacy concerns are often overlooked in M&A transactions (at least until after the transaction has completed), since 12 March 2014 the new re-invigorated Australian Privacy Principles ("APPs") together with the very real prospect of fines for breaches of up to $1.7 million means that privacy compliance is now an important issue in M&A transactions (and a potentially costly one if not addressed). That is, compliance both in terms of (i) the transfer and collection of personal information as part of the transaction and (ii) the target with privacy law in conducting its business.
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