By Genalyn Kabiling
The government is stepping up its public information drive about data privacy and protection following the declaration of “National Data Privacy Awareness Week” every last week of May.
In Proclamation No. 527, Malacañang has directed the National Privacy Commission (NPC) to lead the activities seeking to raise awareness about the protection of people’s data privacy rights.
Government agencies, including government-owned and -controlled corporations and state universities and colleges, have also been ordered to participate in such information campaign.
“There is a need to inform and educate the public about data privacy, data protection, and fair information rights and responsibilities as part of reinforcing the efforts of the National Privacy Commission in protecting personal data and ensuring the Philippines’ compliance with international standards for data protection,” the proclamation read.
The Palace recognized that a person’s right to privacy, including privacy of communications and correspondence, is protected by the 1987 Constitution.
Under Republic Act No. 10173, also known as Data Privacy Act, the government is also mandated to protect the privacy rights while ensuring a free flow of information to promote innovation and growth.
“The State recognizes the vital role of information and communications technology in nation-building and its inherent obligation to ensure that personal information in information and communications systems in the government and the private sector are secured and protected,” the proclamation read.
The proclamation was signed by Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea last July 3 and released by the Palace Thursday.
The release of the proclamation came after more than 100 government websites went down last Wednesday due to alleged hardware failure. Authorities claimed there was no hacking incident and assured steps are being taken to prevent a repeat of the website crash.