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2 min read

New Privacy Act Training Rules for Federal Contractors

Federal government contractors must comply with new Privacy Act training procedures due to a final rule passed by the United States Department of Defense, General Service Administration, and National Aeronautics and Space Administration. Federal contractors are now required to meet training obligations to address the protection of privacy with the Privacy Act of 1974 and the handling and safeguarding of personally identifiable information. These new regulations became effective on January 19, 2017. To make sure that an individual is in full compliance with these rules, it is often a good idea to contact a knowledgeable government contracts attorney who can help to make sure that you are in full compliance.

Who Must Follow These New Privacy Act Training Laws?

This new rule requires federal contractors to provide initial and annual Privacy Act training for three types of employees. These rules noticeably do not apply to an individual who only has limited access to a contractor’s human resources information or even the personal information of other types of third parties. These three groups include employees who on behalf of a federal agency:

  • Have access to a system of records. The Federal Acquisition Regulations define a system of records as a group of any records that are under the control of an agency and from which information can be obtained revealing the name of an individual or any identifying number or mark that is distinctively assigned to the individual.

  • Design, develop, maintain, and operate a system of records.

  • Create, collect, disclose, dispose of, disseminate, manage, process, store or in any way handle personally identifiable information. Personally identifiable information is information that can be used to determine an individual’s identity.

New Training Requirements

Employees to whom these new training requirements apply must be trained before handling this type of information. Unless it is specifically required that an employee receives direct instruction from a government agency, contractors are permitted to train their employees. Certain elements must be covered in this training including how this personal information should be safeguarded. If a contractor decides to perform their training, it is essential to consult with legal counsel to make sure that training satisfies the requirements of the new regulations. Privacy training is required to cover certain topics, which include the following elements:

  • Details about restrictions on the use of unauthorized equipment.

  • How to properly handle and safeguard this private information.

  • Information about the role of the Privacy Act of 1974.

  • Prohibitions against the unauthorized use of information.

  • What to do in the event of a certain or suspected breach of privacy.

How a Skilled Government Contracts Attorney Can Help

If you feel that a government employee failed to adhere to these new training regulations, do not hesitate to contact a lawyer. For businesses that require the assistance of reliable legal counsel, the attorneys at Whitcomb, Selinsky, & McAuliffe, PC have the experience and knowledge to help many clients reach the best possible results. Do not hesitate to contact our law office today by submitting our online form or calling us at (866) 476-4558.