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Implement personal data protection rules urgently

Friday April 23 2021

Immaculate Kassait

Data Commissioner Immaculate Kassait. FILE PHOTO | NMG

BDgeneric_logo By BUSINESS DAILY
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Summary

  • The Data Commissioner has released a set of rules to guide the protection of sensitive personal data that institutions may access when offering services to the public.
  • Under the regulations, entities identified as data controllers and processors are required to provide special safeguards when handling data such as marital status, sexual orientation, health status, ethnicity, names of children and biometric data.

The Data Commissioner has released a set of rules to guide the protection of sensitive personal data that institutions may access when offering services to the public.

Under the regulations, entities identified as data controllers and processors are required to provide special safeguards when handling data such as marital status, sexual orientation, health status, ethnicity, names of children and biometric data.

The entities — including learning institutions, landlords, churches, and security firms operating closed-circuit television cameras (CCTV) — are also expected to get certification, ensure lawful processing of data, fairly and in a transparent manner. Besides, they should inform clients how the information will be used while correcting any wrong entries.

This is the right step at a time the world is grappling with safety of personal data for overall security of individuals and business.

While the safeguards are a bold attempt at protecting sensitive personal information, the data chief ought to ensure that the rules are implemented and put to good use.

Laws, rules, and regulations remain dud when there is no monitoring and the entities concerned get away with missteps, misuse and outright abuse knowing very well that the agency concerned has no teeth to implement and punish.

The Data Commissioner must not take the same road to nowhere where rules gather dust on the shelves.

According to the rules, data handlers will get the nod of the Data Commissioner to transfer personal data outside the country and provide proof of safeguards against misuse of the information.

Due to interconnectedness, this long list of personal information is left across the world.

It would be prudent for the Data Commissioner to have the latest technologies to assess cases of breach and also extend monitoring to other jurisdictions using collaborations and continuous training of personnel.

These rules ought to be put to use as fast as possible while remaining alert to the enormity of the role that awaits the Data Commissioner and other government agencies to deliver security and ensure uninterrupted personal and business agenda.

2021-04-22 21:00:00


www.businessdailyafrica.com


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