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Protection of Personal Information (POPI) Act

POPIA refers to South Africa’s Protection of Personal Information Act, No 4 of 2013 and promotes the protection of personal information by public and private bodies. Is to ensure that all South African institutions conduct themselves in a responsible manner when collecting, processing, storing and sharing another entity's personal information, by holding them accountable.

The President has declared parts of the Protection of Personal Information Act, (POPIA) No 4 of 2013, but has not yet been commenced meaning there is no deadline as of yet.

The National Assembly appointed the Information Regulator on 7 September 2016. The Regulator can only provide you with an Enforcement Notice when the Act has commenced and if an interference with the protection of personal information of a data subject; such as any breach of the conditions of lawful processing of personal information or a breach of the provisions of the code of conduct.

Not complying could land you with up to R10 million in fines or 10 years jail in extreme cases. The act has serious implications for representatives such as company directors as well as compliance officers and principals.

How to Comply:

    In order to comply with POPIA when it is commenced a Privacy Policy is required. A privacy policy needs to include the following;

  • Security implementations in your business
  • Responsible party or operator in your business
  • Prescriptions for direct marketing in your business
  • Special information & legal requirements in your business
  • Updated Section 51 PAIA Manual and submission to the relevant authority

You now have the legal rights of protection and the ability to exercise control over your information, which includes: ID/Passport number, phone number, email address, physical address, religious/philosophical beliefs, ethnic origin, health/sex life, biometric data, criminal record, disability status and salary/wages, etc.

Who must do what?

Staff, clients, suppliers, associates, co-owners and yourself have the right to know and consent to:

  • When you share your information
  • What you choose to share
  • How your information will be used
  • Know who has access to your information
  • Know where your information is stored
  • Be assured of the accuracy of your information

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