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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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Breaking News: The CPRA (CCPA 2.0) Makes the November Ballot

The California Privacy Rights Act (CPRA) officially makes the November ballot for the 2020 elections. After the Californians for Consumer Privacy advocate group filed a Writ of Mandate, it led to a hearing before the Sacramento Superior Court on Friday, June 19, 2020. Judge Change of the Sacramento Superior Court ruled in favor of the advocacy group to ensure the delay of verifying signatures would not stand in the way of CPRA.

Following the court order, Secretary of State Padilla had to direct the remaining counties to verify and report valid signatures by June 25, 2020, just in time for CPRA to meet the deadline.

Countdown of the Top 10 Ramifications of CPRA

 

  1. Easier to read
  • Clearer language
  • Answers key questions about CCPA
  • Clear new exemption for loyalty programs

 

  1. Changes the threshold for small businesses
  • 100,000 California consumers or $25M or 50% of your revenue from selling data
  • Excludes devices from that count if not linked to a consumer
  • Adds “sharing” as the third criteria for applicability if a business derives more than 50% of its revenue from selling or sharing data

 

  1. Right to correct
  • Similar to GDPR
  • Potential liability to consider
  • Additional ramifications to consider

 

  1. Right to know
  • Current timeline: 12-month look-back period – this can create issues as the delete request may include additional information
  • Timeline changes – 12-month look-back or data collected after January 1, 2022, whichever has more data
  • There are new potential exemptions for unstructured data
  • New data minimization requirements

  1. Stricter rules for minors
  • Penalties are tripled
  • Signals the importance of protecting a minor’s data

 

  1. More details on breaches
  • Consumers can seek statutory damages rather than having to allege specific harms
  • Implementing security measures after a breach does not cure the breach
  • Expands breach definition to include unauthorized access to online accounts

 

  1. Behavioral Advertising
  • Prohibits sharing of personal information for behavioral advertising
  • Provides opt out of behavioral advertising
  • Requirement to respect a browser preference even as a default – this matches the Attorney General’s latest operating guidelines

 

  1. Sensitive Information
  • Creation of a category for sensitive information and how to deal with it
  • Consumer rights to restrict the use of sensitive information

 

  1. Employment Data
  • Extends the exemption for employment data to January 1, 2023
  • As noted earlier, the timing of the November Ballot has significant ramifications for organizations as it CPRA doesn’t pass it would be challenging to develop a process with only five weeks’ notice during the holidays/end of year

 

  1. Enforcement Agency
  • Creates an enforcement agency
  • Authority dedicated to enforcement, comparable to an EU’s Data Protection Agency
  • Signals the importance of compliance
  • An agency would undoubtedly provide much more guidance and information to businesses
  • The agency would take over rule-making authority from the Attorney General

Only time will tell if the CPRA bill passes in the November election. As a best practice, businesses should consider devising a pass/no pass strategy to ensure they are prepared for the outcome of the election.

Join us as we speak about this update during our webinar with IAPP on July 1st, 2020, Register Now

 

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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