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Government completes personal data protection bill amid privacy concerns

Jakarta Post - July 25, 2019

Jakarta – The Communications and Information Ministry has completed the personal data protection bill, pushing closer to a more stringent electronic data law in the country.

The ministry's information applications director general, Semuel Pangerapan, said that the bill had been drawn up by the relevant ministries and state institutions and that he expected the bill to soon be approved by the House of Representatives (DPR).

"The recent [and] widespread adoption of artificial intelligence [AI] in society has also required large amounts of private data, which is prone to abuse in this era of digital technology," Semuel said on Wednesday as quoted by tempo.co.

He said the bill was meant to ensure the appropriate use of personal data among industry stakeholders, adding that the public should not worry that the bill would hamper tech innovations.

The newly completed bill calls for the formation of an independent data protection authority (DPA) to monitor and analyze corporate use of personal data.The DPA must also ensure that data regulations will not interfere with technological developments.

"I prefer that the [DPA] be independent [from] the Communications and Information Ministry. We will discuss this further with the DPR," said Semuel.

Furthermore, he said that establishing the DPA would avoid burdening digital small and medium enterprises with the obligation to analyze their customers' data.

Coordinating Economic Minister's senior expert Indra Purnama said he hoped that the proposed legislation would raise public awareness of the need to protect personal data.

"Being aware of personal data protection is vital. Thankfully, the government has recognized this important issue in proposing a legislation that will help protect the people," he said. (rfa)

Source: https://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2019/07/25/govt-completes-personal-data-protection-bill-amid-privacy-concerns.html