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DIFC: DIFC launches consultation on proposed amendments to Data Protection Law

The Dubai International Financial Centre ('DIFC') launched, on 25 February 2021, a public consultation on the proposed amendments to the Data Protection Law No. 5 of 2020. In particular, the amendments provide that Article 33 of the Law should be amended to require that a data controller maintains a register of instances in which it has extended the period for compliance with a data subject access request, has charged a fee for such a request, or refused to act on such a request due to a request being complex, manifestly unfounded, or excessive. In addition, the amendments outline that the Data Protection Commissioner may inspect the proposed register at any time and may request additional information, raise a query, or conduct an investigation.

Furthermore, the amendments clarify that the Commissioner shall not be required to pay any court costs for proceedings initiated by the Commissioner, however the court may award costs against the Commissioner in cases where the Commissioner is unsuccessful and has acted in bad faith or in excess of his functions. In addition, the amendments provide that the Commissioner may make a finding of a contravention of the Law, and that in an appeal to the court, the appellant may only rely on the material before the Commissioner at the time he made the relevant finding.

Comments can be submitted via post or emailed to [email protected] by 28 March 2021.

You can read the press release here and the consultation paper here.