Monday, December 16

Ministry identifying steps to strengthen data protection

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KUALA LUMPUR: The Information, Communications and Culture Ministry will identify a viable model to encourage active participation of various parties in the bid to strengthen the framework for the enforcement of the Personal Data Protection Act.

Its secretary-general Datuk Seri Kamaruddin Siaraf said based on the response at the seminar on the matter yesterday, a suitable framework would be drawn up to ensure it fulfilled the requirement of the stakeholders apart from providing sufficient protection to consumers.

“We will see to it that this Act will be implemented. The appointment of a commissioner will ensure this,” he said when closing the seminar yesterday.

Meanwhile, University of Malaya’s law faculty lecturer Prof Abu Bakar Munir said the Act, approved by parliament in June 2010 and to take effect in June this year, would provide six safeguards to ensure personal data are not abused by parties with vested interest.

The safeguards are the right to be informed, right to access, right to correct, right to withdraw consent, right to prevent processing which are likely to cause distress, and right to prevent processing for direct marketing purposes.

In the United Kingdom, these rights were being exercised by artistes and celebrities to pursue actions on the unauthorised use of their pictures, he said in his working paper, titled “Personal Data Protection Act 2010: To Comply Is To Know” at the seminar.

During a dialogue session later, Abu Bakar said the personal data of individuals could only be stored for a certain period.

“The data is kept for certain purposes and once these have been fulfilled, it should be destroyed.

“Data integrity principles would require organisations to ensure data are accurate, up-to-date and relevant,” he said. — Bernama