Collecting your personal information

We collect personal information because we need it as part of what we do.


We usually get it from you but we may get it from other sources (as permitted by law) and we make sure it is kept safe.

Why we collect personal information

We collect necessary information to assist us:

  • process people, goods and craft across the border
  • collect Crown Revenues
  • manage and mitigate risks to NZ that may be present at the border
  • assist other government agencies to manage and mitigate risks to NZ (like the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) and Immigration New Zealand (INZ))

How we collect personal information

When you travel we collect necessary information from:

  • you
  • your travel agent (if you use one)
  • your airline
  • other agencies such as the Department of Internal Affairs (passport) or Immigration New Zealand (visa or entry requirements).

When you import or export goods we collect information from:

  • you
  • your broker or importing firm
  • the supplier you purchased from
  • a freight forwarder, like DHL or FedEx.

When you interact with Customs in other manners, i.e. through our website, we collect information from:

  • you
  • authorised agent.

Customs also investigates border risks such as drug smuggling, revenue fraud and prohibited goods. We use information provided by you to facilitate you or your goods across the border however this information may be used during an investigation. We sometimes collect information from other sources to support our investigations but only where we have a lawful basis to do so.

How we store your personal information

We keep your personal information secure by:

  • assuring we are aligned with the Protective Security Requirements
  • following best practice, including (but not limited to):
    • making sure it’s protected from outside sources
    • making regular backups of our data, and
    • using the best security systems.

We may use cloud computing to manage and store information. We operate our cloud computing according to New Zealand Government standards.

Related legislation

Customs and Excise Act 2018
Privacy Act 1993

At all times, Customs staff must abide by the State Services Commission Code of Conduct and the Customs Code of Conduct

How do we use your information

Customs uses your information to enable it to fulfil obligations with regard to:

  • processing of people, craft and goods across the border
  • collecting all due Crown revenue
  • acting as an agent for other government agencies, such as immigration, to assist them to fulfil their obligations
  • identifying and mitigating risks to NZ at the border. This includes the use of data analytics in order to identify patterns that can help Customs to recognise people, craft and goods who may pose a risk to NZ.

Contact us

For more information about privacy email our Privacy Team.

If you have a question or concern about privacy, contact:

The Privacy Officer
New Zealand Customs Service
PO Box 2218
Wellington 6011

PrivacyOfficer@customs.govt.nz