India Introduces New Data Protection Bill to Safeguard Privacy

New Delhi: The Indian government has introduced a new data protection bill that aims to safeguard the privacy of citizens and promote a secure digital ecosystem. The bill, called the Digital Personal Data Protection Bill 2023, imposes penalties of up to Rs. 250 crores on entities that misuse or fail to protect personal data.

Compared to the earlier draft, the bill has relaxed penalty norms. The Data Protection Board can impose a maximum penalty of Rs. 250 crore and a minimum of Rs. 50 crore on entities violating the norms. The bill also shields the central government, the board, and its members from legal proceedings if they act in good faith.

Under this legislation, the Centre can block access to content for the public’s general interest based on a written reference from the board. Minister of State for Electronics and IT, Rajeev Chandrasekhar, believes the bill will protect citizens’ rights, foster innovation, and provide legitimate access for national security purposes.

Once passed, the bill aims to curb misuse and exploitation of personal data by online platforms, leading to significant behavioural changes and punitive consequences for offenders. It seeks to safeguard data privacy and promote a secure digital ecosystem in India.

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