DMPQ-Discuss the significance of Data protection bill 2019 in the era of data privacy violation.

The pandemic has increased people’s participation in the digital economy. Unfortunately, the number of personal data breaches from major digital service providers has increased worryingly in the same period. The recent alleged data breach at MobiKwik could stand to be India’s biggest breach with the data of 9.9 crore users at risk. Given the significance of data in this age, robust data protection regimes are necessary to prevent such events and protect users’ interests.

Presently, how different entities collect and process users’ personal data in India is mainly governed by the Information Technology Act, 2000, but this data protection regime falls short of providing effective protection to users and their personal data.

The Bill seeks to bring a massive and meaningful change to personal data protection in India through this regime. The proposed regime under the Bill seeks to be different from the existing regime in some prominent ways:

Defining the Roles

The Bill envisages codifying the relationship between individuals and firms/state institutions as one between “data principals” (whose information is collected) and “data fiduciaries” (those processing the data) so that privacy is safeguarded by design.

Ensuring Data Privacy

The Bill seeks to emphasize that data principals will have to maintain security safeguards to protect personal data and also have to fulfill a set of data protection obligations and transparency and accountability measures.

Rights of the Citizens

The Bill seeks to give users a set of rights over their personal data and means to exercise those rights.

Establishing a Regulator

The Bill seeks to create an independent and powerful regulator known as the Data Protection Authority (DPA). The DPA will monitor and regulate data processing activities to ensure their compliance with the regime.

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