There have been some developments on the Protection of Personal Information Bill or POPI. It is slowly making its way through the process. On 13 February 2013, the Select Committee on Security and Constitutional Development (a committee of the NCOP) met on POPI. These are some of the things that stood out for me.

They heard briefings from the:

  • Committee’s Content Advisor,
  • Department of Justice and Constitutional Development (the Department),
  • South African Law Reform Commission,
  • National Treasury, and
  • Financial Services Board (FSB).

The Department has prepared a list of proposed amendments to POPI. Most are of a technical nature, like fixing spelling mistakes. None are really in contention, except for a few issues between the Department and National Treasury.

It was noted that POPI needs to be updated to bring it inline with recent developments in the EU.

The Committee urged National Treasury, the FSB and the drafters to try to resolve the outstanding issues. This would prefer the committee from having to choose one approach, over the other.

The committee will formally meet again on 6 March 2013 to possibly adopt POPI. Whether they will adopt it or not on that date is unknown.

If it is adopted, it will have been adopted with amendments, so it will have to go back to the National Assembly. The National Assembly will then either:

  • pass it, or
  • start a process to find consensus with the NCOP and pass it.

Once passed, it will be signed into law by the President. This could be as early as the end of March.

Once signed, it will probably only commence about six months after that and you will then have a 12 month grace period to comply. So by about September 2014 all processing will have to conform with POPI. Given the amount of work that needs to be done to achieve this, September 2014 is just around the corner.

If you would like to read POPI, please click here.

If you want to find out more about POPI, we are currently running seminars, workshops and training on POPI.

If you would like to find out more about how we can help you regards POPI, click here.