Pakistan Data Protection Law: Misusing Someone’s Data will Lead to 2 Years in Jail & Rs 5 Million Fine

“Personal Data Protection Bill 2018” has been drafted by the Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunication. It has been proposed that those who abuse someone’s personal data will be given the punishment of 2 years in jail and will have to pay Rs 5 million in fine.

“Personal Data Protection Bill 2018” states that Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan assures that the privacy of a person, his/her home, and their dignity is their basic right under its Article 14. All stakeholders are asked to issue their recommendations on the proposed legislation.

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As per the bill, the technological growth has made it easier for anyone to collect data which was quite impossible in the past. Often it is witnessed and heard that the personal data of an individual is processed and used without their consent. That data is misused to blackmail, commit a crime, phishing scams etc. Therefore it is extremely important to protect personal data and ensure that data collectors are aware of their responsibilities.

So if anyone processes or discloses someone’s personal information they will be fined up to Rs 3 million and might be jailed for one year. Also if an offense committed relates to release of sensitive personal information then the fine will be of Rs 5 million. If the person responsible for the security of data fails to do it, they will be fined up to Rs 1 million. If someone does not follow the court’s order they will be fined five hundred thousand rupees.

A person who instructed others to commit an offense leading to a data breach will be fined five million rupees.

Now a data controller can process data under some circumstances like if it is to process performance of a contract to which the data subject is a party or if the data subject has asked to take some steps regarding entering into a contract etc.

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