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1st July 2020 – Why Is That Date Important To My Business?


The Protection of Personal Information (PoPI) Act comes into effect on 1 July 2020. What this means is that ALL businesses have one year from that date to get their data privacy systems in place.


This means as a company you will have strict rules to follow about what you can and can’t do with client’s information, why you can collect it, how long you can keep it and when you need to destroy it.


Protection of Information and the duty to safeguard it applies to all companies whether big or small. Companies are required to conduct their businesses with the degree, skill and care that may reasonably be expected of that company. In this respect PoPI merely provides the framework or the enforcement of these rights, but PoPI is also based on a reasonable standard and the size of the company is taken into account when looking at what steps need to be taken to comply with PoPI.


It is important to note that information is not confined to electronic information but covers information in paper and text as well. The first thing a company needs to do is to understand the law around PoPI, as well as understanding what technologies exist to ensure the safeguarding of information, what policies and processes must be established to govern the proper use of these technologies and also to ensure that staff are properly trained and can adhere to the processes. If these are not in place and an information management system has not been established, compliance with PoPI will in all likelihood be impossible to achieve.


As stated above there is not much time for companies to make sure that they are compliant and after that year, as of July 2021, fines for non-compliance can run up to a maximum of R10 million.


Myers Attorneys will work with companies to understand PoPI and its requirements, from conducting a risk assessment and giving recommendations, to helping refine procedures and implement effective information management systems.


For any queries regarding the above or assistance on contracts or any other commercial needs please contact Myers Attorneys on 011 346 2422 or reception@myersattorneys.co.za

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