Brazil enacts Internet Bill of Rights

Brazil adopted Internet legislation on 23 April which establishes principles, guarantees, rights and obligations for Internet users and providers. According to this law (Marco Civil), use of the Internet in Brazil is founded on respect for freedom of expression, and respects protection of privacy, protection of personal data, and preservation of net neutrality. This means that network operators must treat all traffic equally and not discriminate or charge differentially, for example, by user, content or site.

After the Edward Snowden revelations, there was a proposal that global Internet companies would have to store Brazilian users’ data on servers inside the country. In the end, the controversial local data storage provision was not included in the law. Such companies will, however, have to comply with Brazil’s law if they have Brazilian users. Brazil has no comprehensive data protection law so far.

Brazil's president, Dilma Rousseff, who signed the law on 23 April, wrote in a blog: ‘The Marco Civil protects the privacy of citizens, both in relation to the government and in relation to companies operating on the Internet. The law demonstrates the feasibility and success of open, multi-sectoral discussions, as well as the innovative use of the Internet as an interactive discussion platform.’

We will publish an analysis of this law in a future issue of Privacy Laws & Business International Report.

The text of the law, in Portuguese.