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DAILY NEWS ANALYSIS

GS-II :
  • 07 August, 2019

  • Min Read

Going Local

GS-II: Going Local

Context

A high-level government panel has recommended doing away with the requirement of foreign firms needing to store a copy of all personal data within India.

Background

  • This approach marks a significant departure from the recommendations of the Justice Srikrishna committee report which had suggested that a copy of personal data must be stored in the country.
  • The panel’s decision comes after a rethink by the Reserve Bank of India, which earlier relaxed its April 2018 circular that had mandated that all payment data generated in the country be stored.

Benefits of Localisation

It will address questions on privacy and security, enable greater governmental access to data, and help develop local data infrastructure.

1.No strong data protection law

In the absence of a strong data protection law, questions of privacy and security are unlikely to be addressed.

2. Bilateral Treaties are better

While there are reasonable arguments to be made in favour of law enforcement having greater access to data, especially when it is not stored in India, interventions such as bilateral treaties aimed at addressing specific issues might be a more prudent approach.

3. Definition of Critical Data

  • The next set of questions is likely to centre around what constitutes critical personal data.
  • The Srikrishna committee report had classified personal data pertaining to finances, health, biometric and genetic data, religious and political beliefs, among others, as sensitive personal data.

4. A single agency

  • It had envisaged a data protection agency which would list out further categories of sensitive personal data.
  • But it is debatable whether a single agency is best suited to draw up this list. As, globally the framing of localisation norms has been largely contextual, driven typically by the type of data and the sector it relates to — in Canada, any data may be sensitive based on the context sector-specific regulators might be better at identifying which data is sensitive.

Source: Indian Express


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