Transport for NSW has provided police and immigration authorities with access to the personal information of dozens of Opal card users suspected of criminal offences.
Registered Opal cards, which are linked with users’ names, addresses, email and phone contacts and bank accounts, provide the authorities with the ability to track a users’ journeys across the public transport network by time and date.
The first figures on information disclosures to be released by Transport for NSW indicate there have been 166 Law Enforcement Requests from NSW Police, and 15 from the Department of Immigration, since the full rollout of the Opal system in December 2014. Personal information was disclosed on 57 of these requests: 19 for proceedings of an offence, 6 missing persons and 32 on reasonable grounds of an offence, according to a department spokesman.
This compares with almost 11,000 incidents of access to Queensland’s Go Cards, mostly by state police, between 2006 and 2014. \