Deo Debattista jindirizza seminar f’Jum il-Protezzjoni tad-Data

“Fl-irwol tiegħi bħala Segretarju Parlamentari għall-Protezzjoni tal-Konsumatur, huwa l-għan tiegħi li nara li d-drittijiet taċ-ċittadini jkunu mħarsa u msaħħa skont l-iżviluppi u l-ħtiġijiet li jkun hemm fis-soċjeta”, qal is-Segretarju Parlamentari Deo Debattista f’diskorsu waqt seminar li kien organizzat mill-Kumissjoni tal-Protezzjoni tad-Data, fil-preżenza tal-Kummissarju Savior Cachia.

Dan huwa settur  b’saħħitha mad-drittijiet tal-konsumatur, iżda għal diversi snin, konsumaturi ta’ prodotti u servizzi ma kinux jaħsbuha darbtejn sabiex iħallu warajhom dettalji personali fit-tranżazzjonijiet tagħhom. Kien kważi mistenni minnhom li jagħtu d-dettalji personali tagħhom sabiex igawdu minn servizz aħjar u aktar effiċjenti.

Fl-istess ħin, produtturi ta’ servizz jew prodott, ma kienux jillimitaw l-użu ta’ data personali għat-tranżazzjonijiet li kienu saru, iżda kienu jużawha għal skopijiet li jmorru lil hinn minn dak oriġinali.  Il-bejgħ ta’ dettalji personali kienet titqies prattika normali, u strateġiji sħaħ ta’ marketing kienu jitfasslu madwar l-għażliet u preferenzi ta’ individwi.  Minkejja dan kollu, l-individwi stess bħala konsumaturi, ma kellhomx l-għarfien dwar kif u fejn kienu qed jispiċċaw dawn id-dettalji personali tagħhom.

Minkejja li l-Att dwar il-Protezzjoni tad-Data, li f’Malta daħal fis-seħħ fl-2004, beda jsawwar fostna kollha din it-tip ta’ kuxjenza, u minkejja li l-valur lejn l-użu ġust ta’ data  personali kiber, mal-mogħdija taż-żmien, u bl-iżvilupp fit-teknoloġija, xorta nħass il-bżonn li dan il-qasam jimxi pass ieħor ‘il quddiem.

“Għalhekk, issa wasalna fl-istadju fejn m’għadniex nitkellmu dwar id-Direttiva, iżda lejn l-aħħar ta’ Mejju li ġej se jkun applikabbli r-Regolament Ġenerali dwar il-Protezzjoni tad-Data.  Ir-Regolament se jkun qed ipoġġi l-liġijiet kollha Ewropej fil-qasam tal-Protezzjoni tad-Data fuq l-istess binarji, sewwasew minħabba li l-iżviluppi fit-teknoloġija m’għadhomx iħallu wisq spazju jew distinzjoni bejn pajjiż u ieħor” qal Deo Debattista.

Dan ir-Regolament se jġib miegħu protezzjoni ferm iktar wiesgħa għall-individwi, fosthom id-dritt għall-aċċess dwar id-data li jinżammu u jiġu proċessati mill-organizzazzjonijiet. Konsumatur se jkollu mhux biss dritt għal dan l-aċċess iżda min iżomm id-data se jkollu l-obbligu li jispjega mill-punt tat-tluq, fejn kif u sa meta se jinżammu dawn id-dettalji personali.

Il-konsumatur se jkollu wkoll drittijiet imsaħħa f’dik li hi restrizzjoni tad-data personali tiegħu f’sitwazzjoni fejn iħoss li l-informazzjoni mhix eżatta jew korretta, jew fejn hemm ix-xewqa min-naħa tal-individwu dwar sa fejn għandha tinxtered u tintuża l-informazzjoni dwaru.

“Il-Gvern irid ikun minn ta’ quddiem biex jara li mhux biss ikunu mħarsa dawn id-drittijiet, iżda li jkun trasparenti u kontabbli fid-dmirijiet u obbligi li se jkompli jħaddan fil-kuntest tar-Regolament Ġenerali.  Il-konsumaturi u ċittadini in ġenerali jrid ikollhom aċċess u għarfien dwar id-drittijiet tagħhom f’dan il-qasam, u għalhekk importanti li jkun il-Gvern li jmexxi b’eżempju”, temm jgħid Debattista.

Waqt is-seminar ta’ Nhar it-Tnejn laqqa’ ukoll diversi persuni li kellhom ċans jiltaqgħu ma’ esperti tas-settur biex jitħarġu iktar dwar l-irwol tagħhom bħala konsumaturi fis-settur.

Parliamentary Secretary Deo Debattista addresses a seminar on World Data Protection Day

“In my role as Parliamentary Secretary for Consumer Protection, it is my aim to see that citizens’ rights are respected and strengthened according to social changes and developments” Parliamentary Secretary Deo Debattista said during his opening speech for a seminar organized by the Data Protection Commission, for which Commissioner Savior Cachia was present.

This sector has strong connections to consumer rights, however, for many years, consumers would give away personal details in their transactions without a second thought. On the contrary, this was expected of them in order to benefit from a quicker, mroe efficient service.

Service providers also did not limit the use of personal data in their transactions and would use them for different purposes. The selling of personal data was the norm, and entire marketing strategies would be planned according to consumer preferences. Consumers had little knowledge of where their personal data is being sent.

Despite the awareness which was raised with the introduction of the Data Protection Act in Malta in 2004, the sector needed to move forward.

“In May this year we will apply the General Regulation on Data Protection. This will place all European laws on Data Protection on the same level, especially since technological advances have left little distinctions between one nation and another”, Debattista said.

This regulation will provide for wider consumer protection, including the right for data which has already been processed from organisations. Consumers will also have the right to be notified where and till when their personal data will be stored.

The consumer will also have better rights in personal data restrictions if the consumer feels that certain information is incorrect, or if the consumer wishes to impose the extent to wish personal data is shared.

“The Government needs to ensure that these rights are respected nd must also be transaprent in its respinsabilities brought on by the General Regulation. Consumers and citizens alike need to be aware and have access to information about their rights in this sector, which is why the Government needs to lead by example”, Debattista said.

During Monday’s seminar, individuals had the opportunity to meet with experts in the sector so as to be made more aware of their role as consumers in the industry. Data Protection Commissioner Savior Cachia was also present.

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