In November 2010, the European Commission actually passed a resolution to review the insufficiencies of the 1995 directive, and proposed a reform plan to the European Parliament at the beginning of this year.
The plan aims to strengthen member states’ supervision of the authorities in charge of personal information protection. The EU has repeatedly recognized the importance of personal data autonomy and protection, highlighting the significance of such rights while urging member states to fully protect them.
Judging from the legislative process that has led to Taiwan’s Personal Information Protection Act, the government’s selective implementation of some articles and the distortion of the purpose of the law by some groups, the government has failed to protect the personal rights and privacy endowed by the Constitution and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
Today, personal data protection is just a dream, and one must be wary that the government will use the Personal Information Protection Act as a way to shirk responsibility while at the same time invading people’s privacy.
Tsai Chi-hsun is secretary-general of the Taiwan Association for Human Rights.
Translated by Eddy Chang