The admendments to the Data Privacy Act of 2012 (DPA) sought to strengthen the current law amid the digital transformation in the Philippines.
During the 55th Asia Pacific Privacy Authorities (APPA) Forum, Privacy Commissioner Raymund Enriquez Liboro announced that the House of Representatives - Committee on Information and Communications Technology, has approved the substitute bill to amend the DPA last February 4, 2021.
The substitute bill grants additional powers to the National Privacy Commission (NPC) including issuing summons, subpoenas, contempt powers, and imposing administrative penalities.
“In the last five years, the National Privacy Commission has laid down data privacy in the Philippines with a clear roadmap. In our drive to become a data privacy resilient country, we have adopted a responsive regulatory approach characterized by raising awareness, strict compliance, and enforcing the law. To do this, we find a need to amend the current DPA to keep up with the changing times,” Commissioner Liboro.
Other provisions of the substitute bill:
- Redefining “sensitive personal information” to include biometric and genetic data, and political affiliation, considering the innate sensitivity of these classes of personal data.
- Define the digital age of consent to process personal information to more than fifteen (15) years.
- Inclusion of performance of a contract as a new criterion of the lawful basis for processing of sensitive personal information.
- Modifying criminal penalties under the DPA, giving the proper courts the option to impose either imprisonment or fine upon its sound judgment.
The NPC is also set to introduce administrative fines to strengthen data privacy accountability and build data privacy resilience among personal information controllers and personal information procesors.
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