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Privacy Regulation Roundup: Top Stories of February 2024

By Anas Baig | Reviewed By Omer Imran Malik
Published February 19, 2024 / Updated May 2, 2024

Securiti has started a Privacy Regulation Roundup that summarizes the latest major global privacy regulatory developments, announcements, and changes. These developments will be added to our website on a monthly basis. For each relevant regulatory activity, you can find a link to related resources at the bottom.

1. Amsterdam Court of Appeal against the Paris-based Online Advertising Company

Country: Netherland
Date: 8 January
Summary: The Amsterdam Court of Appeal, in a judgment issued on December 5, 2023, ruled against the Paris-based online advertising company Criteo, directing them to stop placing cookies on individuals' devices without consent. This decision follows Criteo's appeal after a previous ruling on October 18, 2023, where the Court of Amsterdam found Criteo in violation of placing cookies without user consent.

The Court of Appeal affirmed the prior ruling, noting Criteo's failure to explain why it couldn't simply offer the option of placing a cookie only to third parties with required consent. Ad tech providers are responsible for failing to obtain a website user’s consent to the processing of his personal data collected by placing so-called ‘tracking’ cookies on the user’s device via third-party online publishers it partnered with. As a result, Criteo S.A. is ordered to cease placing cookies without valid consent, with a daily penalty of €250, up to a maximum of €25,000, for non-compliance. Read more.

2. Sri Lanka Confirming the Enforcement Dates of PDPA

Country: Srilanka
Date: 15 January
Summary: On January 8, 2024, in Sri Lanka, an Order was issued confirming the enforcement dates of Parts I, II, III, VII, and Part V of the Personal Data Protection Act (PDPA), No. 9 Of 2022.

The enforcement date of Parts I, II, III, and VII of PDPA is March 18, 2025. These parts include provisions related to the following:

  1. Situations exempted from the scope of  PDPA
  2. General processing of data
  3. Privacy notification requirements
  4. Data breach requirements
  5. Data protection officer requirements
  6. Data protection impact assessment requirements
  7. The rules of Accountability in the processing of data
  8. Requirements related to processors engaged in processing activities on behalf of a controller
  9. Requirements related to cross-border transfer of data
  10. Data subject rights
  11. Penalties for non-compliance with PDPA

The retrospective enforcement date of Part V of PDPA is July 17, 2023. It establishes the Data Protection Authority of Sri Lanka (referred to as the Authority in PDPA). This Authority will exercise, perform, and discharge the powers, duties, and functions prescribed by the PDPA. Read more.

3. Royal Decree Outlining Exceptions to Data Controller Obligations under Thailand PDPA

Country: Thailand
Date: 15 January
Summary: In Thailand, on 14 January 2024, the Royal Decree outlining exceptions to data controller obligations under the Personal Data Protection Act (PDPA) came into force.

This decree stipulates that data controllers are not bound to adhere to Chapters 2 and Chapter 3 of PDPA when responding to personal data requests from specific government entities, including the National Anti-Corruption Commission, Revenue Department, Customs Department, Excise Department, recognized local government organizations responsible for tax collection, Secretary of the Cabinet carrying out royal prerogatives, and state agencies acting under laws of public interest.

Chapter 2 of PDPA constitutes obligations such as consent for data processing, consent for minors and incapacitated individuals, and purpose limitation.

Chapter 3 of PDPA constitutes obligations such as limitation on data collection, informing data subject during data collection, conditions for data collection without consent, notification to data subject if data is collected from a different source and explicit consent for obtaining sensitive personal data. Read more.

4. Andorran has Revised its Guidelines on the Use of Cookies

Country: Andorran
Date: 26 January
Summary: The Andorran Data Protection Authority (APDA) has revised its guidelines on the 'Use of cookies, privacy policy, and legal notice,' incorporating guidance from the European Data Protection Board (EDPB) on deceptive design patterns in social media interfaces and the technical scope of Article 5(3) of the ePrivacy Directive.

Aligned with the EDPB, the updated guidelines emphasize limitations on cookie storage time, recommending a maximum of 25 months, and assert the permissibility of denying access to the website for non-acceptance of cookies. The guidelines also outline conditions for obtaining consent from minors under 16 and offer recommendations for designing cookie banners. Additionally, they specify that the absence of a reject button constitutes a breach, and pre-marked boxes in customizable sections do not qualify as valid consent.

The APDA underscores that the legal framework for privacy policies and web tracker policies lies in the conditions for consent outlined in Articles 7 and 8 of the Law of Personal Data Protection, with potential financial administrative fines ranging from €30,001 to €100,000 for non-compliance. Read more.

5. Executive Regulation of Oman Personal Data Protection Law (PDPL)

Country: Oman
Date: 5 February
Summary: The Executive Regulation of the Personal Data Protection Law (PDPL) was issued on 4th February in Oman.

Key features of the new Regulation include the following:

  • Article 5 of PDPL requires entities processing sensitive data to obtain a permit from the Ministry of Transport Communication and Information Technology (MTCIT). The Regulation now outlines application requirements to obtain permits for processing sensitive data and sets a 45-day decision period for the MTCIT.
  • Article 11 of PDPL recognizes data subject rights, such as the right to erasure, retrieval, or transfer of personal data. The Regulation now mandates controllers to respond to such requests within 45 days. Furthermore, it allows controllers to refuse requests if they are deemed vexatious or require extraordinary effort.
  • The Regulation mandates controllers to designate a personal data protection officer. While the regulation does not specify limitations, it allows for existing employees to be designated for this role.
  • The regulation clarifies that no approval from the MTCIT is required for transferring personal data outside Oman. Instead, it mandates an adequate level of protection, with general requirements to safeguard national security and state interests. Exceptions include transfers required by treaties and transfers after anonymizing data. Read more.

6. Guidance on the Somali Data Protection Act

Country: Somalia
Date: 6 February
Summary: The Somali Data Protection Authority has released guidance on the Data Protection Act, outlining its personal, territorial, and material scope of application. It clarifies that the Act applies to entities domiciled, resident, or operating in Somalia, where processing occurs within Somalia, or where data subjects in Somalia are affected by processing activities. Additionally, the guidance covers the Authority's powers and duties, definitions provided by the Act, legal bases for consent, principles of data processing, obligations of controllers and processors, and the rights of data subjects. Read more.

7. Third District Court of Appeal in California

Country: United States (California)
Date: 9 February
Summary: The Third District Court of Appeal in California, in the case CPPA v California Chamber of Commerce, has overturned the lower court's June 30 ruling, which has stated that any implementing regulation required by the CPRA is not enforceable on the date specified by the CPRA but instead enforceable one year after the regulations become final.

The Appeal Court ruled that the trial court erred in its conclusion, as "there is no explicit and forceful language mandating that CPPA is prohibited from enforcing the CPRA until (at least) one year after the CPPA approves final regulations." Consequently, the Chamber was not entitled to the relief granted by the trial court. The Appeal Court directed the trial court to annul its order and judgment, including the partial stay on CPPA's regulation for a 12-month period from the finalization date of each individual regulation.

Therefore, in accordance with the court ruling:

  1. Enforcement of initial CPRA implementing regulations can begin now (rather than in late March).
  2. Enforcement of future regulations can begin upon finalization rather than being subject to a 1-year delay. Read more.

8. Nebraska Governor has signed the Genetic Information Privacy Act

Country: Nebraska
Date: 13 February
Summary: The Nebraska Governor has signed the Genetic Information Privacy Act, which applies to direct-to-consumer genetic testing companies. This law mandates that covered entities must provide consumers with clear and comprehensive information regarding the company's policies and procedures for the collection and disclosure of genetic data, among other obligations. Read more.

Conclusion

Explore Securiti's Privacy Regulation roundup for the latest updates on global privacy developments. We're committed to keeping you informed with timely updates and providing essential information to better understand the changing privacy regulatory landscape. You can also visit our dedicated page, offering an overview of global data privacy laws.

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