US company Iron Mountain has proposed a change to its Australian transport model that is not just unethical and unfair to its workers – it has the potential to put the private data of every Australian at risk.

Drivers at Iron Mountain are responsible for the safe and secure transportation, storage and destruction of private data and documents for a range of clients, including Australian Super, Westpac, the Department of Finance, and internet giant Google, which collects information like the search history, browsing history, and location history of almost every internet user.

This is a crucial service. Iron Mountain’s clients – which also includes companies like Channel 7, Channel 9, Southern Star (Endemol), IBM and The Star Casino – pay a premium for their data and documents to be handled by drivers with a proven track record, established trustworthiness, and the highest level of training, skill and experience. Many have worked with these clients for decades.

Iron Mountain recently announced plans to outsource the security of its clients’ data and documents to a company called Direct Couriers. In doing so, Iron Mountain is refusing to honour its existing contract with its current drivers (which doesn’t expire until 2019) in pursuit of an irresponsible, unethical and unfair cash grab. Drivers have been notified that in order to keep their jobs, they will have to move to Direct Couriers and accept a 35% pay cut.

Further to this, Direct Couriers has provided no guarantee that current drivers will continue their longstanding and trusted relationships with these organisations, and that it won’t instead send cheaper, unknown, untrained drivers on an ad-hoc basis.

Transport Workers’ Union of NSW State Secretary Richard Olsen says: “We asked Iron Mountain to uphold its commitment to its professional and trusted drivers, and continue to engage them under the current Agreement. Iron Mountain has rejected these requests.

“It is clear that Iron Mountain does not intend to do business responsibly and ethically with its workers or its clients. This is a grave concern when it comes to the handling of confidential data and documents. Every Australian should be concerned about this.”

Drivers and TWU NSW representatives are available for interview.

Contact TWU NSW Media and Communications Manager Colin Henderson: 0405 625 208

Transport Workers' Union NSW