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Data Protection Act to Be Tabled Next Financial Year

Minister of Science, Energy and Technology, Dr. the Hon. Andrew Wheatley, says the Data Protection Act will be tabled in Parliament before the end of the next financial year.

Dr. Wheatley said the Act will safeguard, in general, the privacy of individuals in relation to personal data as well as to govern the collection, regulation, processing, keeping, use and disclosure of certain information in physical or electronic form.

“It allows full protection as it relates to how entities that are in possession of the personal data of our citizens, how they treat it and how they share it,” he said.

Dr. Wheatley also noted that the Act will provide a sense of comfort to the citizenry when using technology.

He was speaking to JIS News during a day of activities to observe Cybersecurity Awareness Day at the Police Officers’ Club in St. Andrew on October 31.

In his presentation, Dr. Wheatley informed that an assessment of Government websites was recently concluded in order to ascertain their resilience to cyberattacks.

He said this was done to ensure protection of Government.

Meanwhile, Dr. Wheatley is encouraging persons to take the threat of cybercrime seriously.

“The potential exists for cybercrime to become the most frequent type of crime in our country if we do not take the necessary steps to cauterise it and to inform the public,” he noted, adding that more persons must become “cyber secure”.

State Minister in the National Security Ministry, Senator the Hon. Pearnel Charles Jr., is welcoming partnerships among stakeholders to combat cybercrime.

He also stressed the need for the implementation of proper safeguards to protect against intrusion, especially those targeted at intellectual property.

He noted that the potential financial losses to the country could be damaging, if left unchecked.