PL&B International E-news, Issue 69

1. Turkey’s legislature to debate a government data protection bill

Turkey’s government this week sent to the legislature a bill to protect personal data. This bill is in addition to one introduced two weeks ago on transparency and state secrecy. Both bills are part of Turkey's campaign to become a member of the European Union. The two bills would establish two independent councils to supervise their implementation. The privacy law would define personal data and set out circumstances in which the state may collect personal data, and when such personal data may be transferred to third parties. It also would impose criminal penalties.

More information in next month’s PL&B International Newsletter.

2. 38 million Italian tax returns published on-line

On Wednesday, 30 April, the Italian tax authority placed the details of 38m tax returns on the website of the tax authority. The stampede to the site caused it to crash before the head of the national Garante per la Privacy (Data Protection Commissioner) ordered it to be shut down.

The Data Protection Commissioner, Francesco Pizzetti, said: "It's one thing to make data available in response to precise requests, another to publish it in this way." Income tax declarations in Italy have been public documents since new laws were passed in 1991, so, strictly speaking, there was nothing illegal about them appearing online because people can walk into the Agenzia della Entrate and request to see a particular declaration.

The press has ignored the privacy authority's appeal to refrain from publishing any of the information collected from the tax authority's website.

More information in next month’s PL&B International Newsletter.

3. CNIL orders shut down of France’s new police database

Following objections from the French privacy authority, the CNIL, the French government is suspending the use of new software for recording the personal habits and affiliations of its citizens in a police database. Interior Minister Michèle Alliot-Marie decided on Tuesday 22 April to suspend the Ardoise software, which was confirmed on Thursday 24 April.

More information in next month’s PL&B International Newsletter.

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Copyright Privacy Laws & Business 2008