Apple Daily (Taiwan) has been warned that it must not transfer personal data to a third party without legal authorization, the Ministry of Culture said in a statement yesterday, adding that the newspaper is required to submit a detailed plan on how it plans to handle the data within 10 days.
The sale of the Chinese-language online newspaper came under close scrutiny after Economic Democracy Union convener Lai Chung-chiang (賴中強) accused the newspaper’s new owner, Singaporean Joseph Phua (潘杰賢), of accepting funding from China and intending to use archived data from Apple Daily (Taiwan) for purposes unrelated to running a news Web site, which would potentially also contravene the Personal Data Protection Act (個人資料保護法).
Lai in June reported the case to the Shilin District Prosecutors’ Office in Taipei.
The sale involves various issues, such as freedom of the press, national security, personal data protection and workers’ benefits, the ministry said, adding that it on Wednesday sent a letter to Apple Daily (Taiwan) to remind its management that the way they collect, handle and use personal data should be in accordance with the Personal Data Protection Act and other relevant regulations.
The act would protect most of the data possessed by the Apple Daily (Taiwan), including information about the newspaper’s employees, advertisers, freelance writers, and print and online content subscribers, the ministry said.
Material by which personal information could be directly or indirectly identified is also protected by the act, such as annual tax reports and news material that has not been published, it said.
“We are asking the newspaper to stipulate a detailed plan to ensure the security of personal data in its possession. The plan should also detail how personal data would be disposed of after the business is closed. Such a plan should be delivered to the Ministry of Culture within 10 days,” the ministry said.
Personal data must not be transferred to a third party without legal authorization, it said.
If a new company or platform is created following the change in ownership, the new management must not use the database if its use contravenes the act, it added.
Apple Daily (Taiwan) on Wednesday said in a statement that the personal data of employees and subscribers, as well as published and unpublished material, would be destroyed after being archived for a number of years.
The Labor Standards Act (勞動基準法) states that information about current and former employees must stay in archives for five to seven years before being destroyed, while the Business Entity Accounting Act (商業會計法) stipulates that financial statements, tax reports and other related documents must be held for five to 10 years, the statement said.
Subscribers’ information would be retained, as some have yet to cancel their subscription and request a refund, it said.
“We will also comply with the Article 21 of the Enforcement Rules of the Personal Data Protection Act (個人資料保護法施行細則) and archive published and unpublished material,” the newspaper said.
Taiwan does not exclude the possibility of having formal diplomatic relations with countries that also have formal ties with China, regardless of Beijing’s stance, Minister of Foreign Affairs Joseph Wu (吳釗燮) said on Sunday. There was speculation in 2012 that Honduras was attempting to have simultaneous diplomatic relations with Taiwan and China, an idea that then-minister of foreign affairs David Lin (林永樂) rejected. Honduras severed formal ties with Taiwan on Sunday morning after establishing diplomatic relations with Beijing. President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) administration has taken a more practical approach to relations with like-minded countries since assuming government in 2016. Previous administrations took the
Seven senior faculty members, including the principal, of a high school in Taichung were temporarily suspended from their jobs on Friday, pending an investigation by the Taichung Education Bureau into alleged bullying and abuse that led to the suicide of a student last month. The city’s education officials were too slow to suspend those involved, the student’s father told a news conference on Wednesday, at which Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Chang Liao Wan-chien (張廖萬堅) and members of the Humanistic Education Foundation were also present. The boy had been a good student and a high achiever during elementary and junior-high, and had
Taiwan would have established formal relations with Argentina long ago if not for China’s interference, Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Alexander Yui told US-based Spanish-language online news outlet Infobae in an interview published on Tuesday. Beijing has left behind a string of unfulfilled promises in Latin America, including pledges to build the Grand Nicaragua Canal and airports, docks, ports and industrial zones in El Salvador, he said. Meanwhile, Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Mexico and other countries enjoy pragmatic and improving relations with Taiwan based on cooperation on the economy, culture, technology and science, he said. While Taiwan is “happy to live and let live,”
WASHED ASHORE: Of the 16 bodies discovered along Taiwan’s west coast this month, two were Vietnamese and five were Taiwanese, coast guard officials said Minister of Justice Tsai Ching-hsiang (蔡清祥) said that he has instructed prosecutors and maritime authorities to launch investigations after 16 bodies were found along Taiwan’s west coast this month, amid speculation that they were victims of smuggling or human trafficking rings. Coast Guard Administration (CGA) officials said the bodies, most of which had washed ashore, were found by coast guard personnel and local residents along the coastline from Keelung to Kaohsiung. Thirteen of the bodies are male and three are female, the CGA said, adding that items found on the bodies indicate that two of the men were Vietnamese, while three men