Articles

Belgian Privacy Commission clarifies data breach notification requirement

Belgian Privacy Commission clarifies data breach notification requirement

Belgian Privacy Commission clarifies data breach notification requirement

17.12.2014

As a consequence of several data breaches, the Belgian Privacy Commission (“BPC”) published in January 2013 a recommendation to prevent data breaches. In this recommendation the BPC has for the first time mentioned the existence of a requirement to notify a data breach within 48 hours to the competent authorities. In a recently published Q&A on its website, the BPC now tries to clarify this requirement.

Although the BPC recognizes that there is no legal requirement to notify a data breach, the BPC advises strongly to do so nevertheless. It therefore reiterates the previously mentioned notification period of 48 hours.

The BPC stipulates further that the persons concerned by a data breach will also need to be informed by means that allow the affected persons to receive the relevant information quickly. The notification to the persons affected by the breach should contain the following information, among other things:

  • Contact details from which the data subjects can obtain additional information on a breach incident;
  • A summary of the incident that has affected the personal data of the data subject;
  • The nature and the purpose of the personal data concerned;
  • Conceivable consequences of the data breach for the data subject;
  • Circumstances under which the data breach took place;
  • Measures taken by the data controller to prevent the data breach;
  • The measures on which the data controller advises the data subjects to take to mitigate the damage.

A notification to the data subjects is not required if the data have been sufficiently encrypted. Also, the notification may be postponed if there is a risk that the notification to the data subjects might jeopardize the effectiveness of the investigation. If this occurs, the data controller must indicate on the notification form that it wishes for such permission and explains the reasons for this.

The BPC also sets out further the circumstances in which no notification to the BPC is required: (i) if the data are encrypted, and (ii) if the following three conditions have been fulfilled:

  1. The data subject has immediately been informed of the complete scope of the breach as well as its consequences;
  2. The data breach concerns only a limited group of people (about 100 persons); and
  3. No sensitive or financial data have been compromised.

Finally, the BPC also makes a form available on its website to facilitate the notification procedure. This form must be completed and sent to the BPC via a secured e-forms application on its website.

The complete Q&A of the BPC can be found on: http//www.privacycommission.be.

 

Click here to see a printable version of this article

All rights reserved. Care has been taken to ensure that the content of this e-bulletin is as accurate as possible. However the accuracy and completeness of the information in this e-bulletin, largely based upon third party sources, cannot be guaranteed. The materials contained in this e-bulletin have been prepared and provided by Stibbe for information purposes only. They do not constitute legal or other professional advice and readers should not act upon the information contained in this e-bulletin without consulting legal counsel. Consultation of this e-bulletin will not create an attorney-client relationship between Stibbe and the reader. The e-bulletin may be used only for personal use and all other uses are prohibited.

Team

Related news

22.07.2021 NL law
Towards a European legal framework for the development and use of Artificial Intelligence

Short Reads - Back in 2014, Stephen Hawking said, “The development of full artificial intelligence could spell the end of the human race.” Although the use of artificial intelligence is nothing new and dates back to Alan Turing (the godfather of computational theory), prominent researchers – along with Stephen Hawking – have expressed their concerns about the unregulated use of AI systems and their impact on society as we know it.

Read more

19.07.2021 BE law
One year of Schrems II: a state of affairs for international data transfers

Articles - International data transfers have been the subject of intense debates ever since the Court of Justice issued its landmark judgement of Schrems I, on 6 October 2015. The intensity of the debate was further reinforced since the Schrems II decision one year ago, on 16 July 2020. The decision annulled the U.S. Privacy Shield and severely tightened the rules on the use of standard contractual clauses (“SCCs”).

Read more

18.05.2021 NL law
Kroniek: De bestuursrechtelijke aspecten van de AVG

Articles - Tom Barkhuysen, Steven Bastiaans en Fatma Çapkurt (Universiteit Leiden) schreven samen de eerste editie van de nieuwe jaarlijkse NTB kroniek: de bestuursrechtelijke aspecten van de AVG. Hierin bespreken zij onder meer de meest relevante (bestuursrechtelijke) jurisprudentie van het afgelopen jaar op het gebied van de AVG.

Read more

18.06.2021 NL law
FAQ: Wat houdt het Wetsvoorstel elektronische gegevensuitwisseling in de zorg (Wegiz) in en wat is de verhouding tot de AVG?

Short Reads - (Digitale) gegevensuitwisseling in de zorg is een actueel thema. Illustratief is een item bij EenVandaag van april 2021 waarin de analoge werkwijze bij gegevensuitwisseling in de zorg wordt aangekaart, maar ook dit artikel in het NRC van afgelopen maand waarin verslag werd gedaan van een datalek waardoor duizenden gevoelige patiëntgegevens op straat kwamen te liggen. 

Read more

04.05.2021 NL law
Participatie en privacyregels: hoe te combineren onder de Omgevingswet?

Short Reads - In het stelsel van de Omgevingswet (Ow) is een belangrijke rol bedacht voor participatie bij de totstandkoming van besluiten. Het beoogde resultaat: tijdig belangen, meningen en creativiteit op tafel krijgen en daarmee een groter draagvlak en kwalitatief betere besluitvorming bereiken. Door een grotere betrokkenheid van meer personen gaan overheden en initiatiefnemers ook meer persoonsgegevens verwerken. Dit brengt privacyrisico’s met zich mee. Wat regelt de Ow op het gebied van privacy, de verwerking van persoonsgegevens en datagebruik?

Read more