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Alert Level 3 - POPIA

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Commencement of Certain Sections of the Protection of Personal Information Act – 01 July 2020

President Cyril Ramaphosa announced on Monday, 22 June 2020, that more provisions of the Protection of Personal Information Act (POPIA) will come into force on 01 July 2020.

The Presidency announced that sections 2 to 38; sections 55 to 109; section 111 and section 114 (1), (2) and (3) will come into force on 01 July 2020, with further sections of POPIA (mainly sections 110 and 114(4)) expected to come into force on 30 June 2021.

The sections that will come into force on 01 July 2020 regulate, amongst other things, the conditions under which personal information may be processed; the categories of, and requirements for processing, special categories of personal information; direct marketing by means of unsolicited electronic communications (such as emails); the enforcement of POPIA; and the processes and procedures for dealing with complaints.

The sections that will come into force on 30 June 2021, relate to the amendment of laws, and the effective transfer of functions of the Promotion of Access to Information Act, 2000 (PAIA) from the South African Human Rights Commission to the Information Regulator.

In terms of section 114(1), following the commencement of these sections businesses will have a twelve month period within which to get their house in order and ensure compliance with the provisions of POPIA.

Non-compliance with POPIA may result in administrative fines of up to R10 million, imprisonment, civil damages and most importantly, reputational harm. It is important that all businesses ensure compliance with POPIA during the 12 month grace period (and preferably sooner, rather than later).

Should you require any assistance with POPIA presentations, training, assessments and implementation plans, please contact our offices.

Link to the Presidency’s announcement:


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