India's Joint Parliamentary Committee Announces Recommended Changes to Privacy Bill

Last month, the Indian Joint Parliamentary Committee submitted its report on the 2019 Personal Data Protection Bill after two years of consideration, research, and analysis. The bill, while not a certainty but likely to pass, would replace what some consider to be archaic data protection regulations. Although not finalized, the biggest obstacle if implemented as envisioned is strict data localization. India has been in the group of countries legislating data privacy for decades, culminating in the 2021 JPC report submission. Here’s a look at the history of data privacy legislation in India.

 

The History of Data Privacy Legislation in India

  • 2000 – Information Technology Act is passed by parliament and signed by President K.R. Narayanan addressing electronic documents, e-signatures, and record authentication.
  • 2017 – The Indian Supreme Court hears Justice KS Puttaswamy vs Union of Indiaand passes a historic judgment affirming the constitutional right to privacy.
  • 2019 – Introduction of the Personal Data Protection Bill and immediately sent to the JPC to be examined.
  • 2021 – JPC submits report on PDP to Indian Parliament revisions.

 

The long-awaited report submitted December 16, 2021 by the JPC has provided necessary clarification and modifications that seek to enhance the syntax and governance of the bill.

 

The recommended amendments are as follows:

  • Scope – The bill has a proposed name change to Data Protection Bill and will cover both personal and non-personal data which is unusual as distinction of data type can be difficult when managing mass amounts of data. Clauses also address the deceased and transfer of minor rights (see Clause 16 below).
  • Implementation Timeline – The report outlines a timeline with a 24-month implementation period for data processors to comply.
  • Definitions – The following terms have been defined or revised: consent manager, data auditor, data breach, data fiduciary, data processor, data protection officer, harm, and non-personal data.
  • Clauses 13 & 14 – These clauses apply to consent of personal data processing for employment and legitimate interest, marrying the interests of both the data principal and data fiduciary.
  • Clause 16 – Entities dealing with the data of children must register with the DPA and are required to communicate with the subject 3 months prior to adult age to regain consent and “must continue providing the services to the child unless the child withdraws consent.”

 

The implementation timeline for the Data Protection Bill is still unknown but will likely be a phased approach. Like California, there is discussion of an oversight committee called the Data Protection Authority of India that would supervise compliance with the proposed law. With the notable amendments to the bill, it’s unlikely we’ll see this come to fruition quickly. Not unlike most proposed privacy legislation, it has been met with dissent and opposition and will have to make its way through the courts of India before becoming law.

 

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Prop 24 (CPRA/CCPA 2.0) Has Passed: What This Means For You

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Dan Clarke, President - IntraEdge

California voters said "yes" to Proposition 24, known as the California Privacy Rights Act (CPRA). The CRPA expands California's landmark consumer privacy law, adding a level of complexity that aims to strengthen consumer privacy protections. One of the most significant changes under the CPRA is the creation of a stringent privacy enforcement agency, the California Privacy Protection Agency.

A fully funded independent agency dedicated to enforcing privacy regulation is set to dramatically change how privacy rights are handled in the U.S. According to Dan Clarke, president of IntraEdge, "They take over the ability to take enforcement actions, and I think they are going to be much more aggressive." In addition to enforcing the law, the protection agency would become an effective privacy regulator and issue guidelines for organizations.

How is this going to change enforcement?

According to Clarke, "When the new agency takes over next year, I think you will see a big shift." The privacy protection agency would be staffed with nearly 50 agents and, most likely, more the following year. These agents would heighten enforcement with the additional time and resources to broaden audit powers, which means more businesses would need a comprehensive privacy solution to provide efficient reports and logs.

Along with enforcing the law, it will be the privacy protection agency's responsibility to guide businesses and consumers regarding consumer data protection and privacy. This year's enforcement guidelines advised companies to have conspicuous privacy practices, but this privacy protection agency is likely to take audits even further and perform a more detailed review of privacy practices.

Next year after the agency takes over on July 1st, 2021, we should expect to see more organizations in line with privacy regulation and more notices being sent for negligence. Businesses must have an end-to-end automated solution that can process subject access requests and provide consumers with a seamless experience to process their privacy requests. We will keep you updated on California's Privacy Protection Agency's key initiatives or guidelines as we get more information.

Monique Becenti
About Monique Becenti
Monique Becenti is the Product Marketing Manager at Truyo. She has deep technical knowledge in technology with an emphasis on data privacy.
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