Kris Gopalakrishnan led panel proposes new legislation for non-personal data; seeks feedback

Kris Gopalakrishnan led panel proposes new legislation for non-personal data; seeks feedback
Kris Gopalakrishnan
13 Jul, 2020

Infosys co-founder Kris Gopalakrishnan led expert panel, which was set up by the central government last September to deliberate on rules for non-personal data governance, has submitted its draft report. 

It has proposed new legislation to regulate such data.

“The regulations proposed for non-personal data can be enforced effectively and at a national scale only if they are incorporated as part of a new national law. The committee strongly recommends that the proposed non-personal data governance framework becomes the basis of new legislation for regulating non-personal data,” the draft report said.

The ministry of electronics and information technology (MeitY) has invited suggestions from the public for consideration of the central government on framing rules for non-personal data governance. A committee will study various issues relating to non-personal data, a notification on the citizen engagement platform MyGov said.

The expert panel includes representatives from the department for the promotion of industry and internal trade (DPIIT), industry bodies, subject experts and advocacy groups.

According to the committee, non-personal data is defined as data without any personally identifiable information. Data on weather conditions, sensors installed on industrial machines, public infrastructures that cannot identify a person is grouped under non-personal data. Information that was initially personal data but was later made anonymous is also considered non-personal data.

“The report touches upon several emerging and innovative ideas on non-personal data such as attempts to give a definition of non-personal data and the concept of community data and the appropriate rights and privileges over this data, defines three categories – public, community and private, the definition of a new concept called data business, open access meta-data registers, consent for anonymisation of data, the sensitivity of non-personal data, defined purposes for data sharing as sovereign purpose, core public interest purposes and economic purposes,” the note said.

The committee is seeking feedback from the public on the draft by August 13, 2020, to finalise its report.

For the draft report, the panel met representatives belonging to businesses, both Indian and global, from various sectors including health, e-commerce, internet, enterprise subject matter experts, not for profit and think-tanks, technology service providers to get their views.

The draft report presents trends in data availability, its socio-economic impact, under-optimal use of data, and makes a case for regulating data.

The report suggested the creation of a technology architecture for data sharing which will provide technology-related guidelines for digitally implementing the recommended rules and regulations around data sharing.

It also recommended the establishment of a non-personal data regulatory authority, which will have an ‘enabling and enforcing’ role.  “The data regulatory authority will evaluate the genuineness of such requests based on social/ public/ economic good and mandate that the appropriate raw/factual data be shared,” the report said.