2.86 As far as possible, Ministers should not use their personal email account or phone number to conduct ministerial business. Where the use of a personal account or phone number for ministerial business is unavoidable (for example, when Ministers are travelling and/or have issues accessing their ministerial account) it is important that:
- information is protected from unauthorised access, use, and disclosure and that classified and personal information is handled appropriately;
- the Minister's office and officials have ready access to relevant information;
- timely responses can be made to requests for access to that information, for example, under the Official Information Act 1982 and the Privacy Act 2020; and
- accurate records can be preserved of ministerial decision-making in line with the Public Records Act 2005 (see also paragraph 8.104).
2.87 Where a personal email account or phone number is used, steps should be taken to ensure those communications are captured for the official record.