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Joint select committee to be re-convened for Data Protection Bill

Saturday, May 25, 2019

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KINGSTON, Jamaica — A Joint Select Committee of Parliament is to be re-convened no later than June, in an effort to have the Data Protection Bill approved in this financial year.

Minister of Science, Energy and Technology, Fayval Williams, said that having gone through public consultations, the committee will now look back at the recommendations and take the Act back to Parliament.

“As we develop into a digital and knowledge-based society, the data protection Bill is a critical piece of legislation that establishes a uniformed, robust and clear mandate on how personal data can be collected, stored, used and shared,” the minister explained.

She outlined that the Act will usher in a significantly different period, giving more rights to the individual, in terms of the control and use of their data.

The minister pointed out that the Bill will require data controllers to completely re-think how they process personal data, as “data has been described as the new oil, and a wealth of data can be collected from consumers online and through other means.”

She said the administration will be guided by a number of stipulations, including a requirement to develop data privacy policies which ensure that the personal data being processed is obtained fairly and lawfully, and that the processing is consistent with the purpose for which it was collected.

Additionally, the data will need to be accurate, and where necessary, kept up-to- date, and not kept any longer than is necessary for its purpose.

She emphasisedthat data controllers will also need to ensure that data is safeguarded against unauthorised or unlawful processing, accidental loss or destruction.


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