Expect More Spam: No Data Privacy for Malaysians Yet Despite 2010 Law

No date has been set for the enforcement of the Personal Data Protection Act 2010. “It will be enforced as soon as possible,” said Communication and Multimedia Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek, though he declined to be more specific as to whether it will be in force by the end of the year. Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) Chairman Datuk Mohamed Sharil Mohamed Tarmizi noted that as data crosses all industries, “there will be a lot of consultation, which we would have to go through those first, as the regulator in each sector has its own data protection requirement.” The act plays a crucial role to safeguard the interest of individuals and make it illegal for corporate entities or individuals to sell personal information or allow third party the use of data. Singapore has a similar Act that came into force in 2013. On the issue of the possibility of regulating local online portals as done in Singapore, Ahmad Shabery said that MCMC is studying the issue. “There is a limit, even for countries that propagate freedom of expression,” said Ahmad Shabery.

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