Data Protection Bill is progress

In Summary

• The danger comes when personal data is correlated with internet usage.

• Bill will resolve legal vacuum on data protection in Kenya.

ICT CS Joe Mucheru
ICT CS Joe Mucheru
Image: FILE

The Data Protection Bill might soon become law after the Senate ICT committee and ICT CS Joe Mucheru agreed on contentious clauses (see P7).

An independent regulator will be set up to monitor data collection. The Bill also states that government agencies should not collect data on a person’s race and ethnic origin, religious beliefs, political persuasions or health status.

The Bill is controversial because no one likes the idea of being followed by Big Brother. We do not want to follow the Chinese route where facial recognition software tracks citizens at all times.

Right now, there is a legal vacuum in Kenya concerning data collection. This Bill establishes clear guidelines for what is acceptable and unacceptable.

Facebook, Google and other internet companies are already collecting far more personal data than the government on what people do.

This is the digital world we now all live in. There is no harm in government holding the basic data of Huduma Namba.

The danger comes when your personal data is correlated with what you look at and whom you talk to. And that is what this Bill will make illegal.



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The South African singer died on  May 9, 2004