Personal Data Transfers in Hong Kong

The global data economy is flourishing, and the rapid growth of this sector has brought with it numerous challenges for privacy officers. As a result, many organisations are faced with the necessity to transfer personal data across geographical regions and jurisdictions in order to conduct business. However, the transfer of personal data is subject to strict data privacy regulation. This article, by Padraig Walsh of Tanner De Witt’s Data Privacy practice group, outlines the key points to consider when dealing with personal data transfers.

It is vital to understand the interpretation of personal data transfers in Hong Kong, as there are some differences from other locations. In particular, it is important to understand the scope of data transfer obligations under the PDPO and how they apply to cross-border transfers. This helps to reduce business risk and promote efficient compliance data transfers across organisations.

To start, a solid business case is essential for data governance. It spells out the broad strategic objectives of your governance program, and provides a clear path to achieving these goals. It will identify the specific people (roles), technologies and processes required to support your governance program, and should align with your organization’s overall goals for data.

A good business case will also highlight the benefits of data governance and the potential return on investment. For example, your organization may experience a reduction in the number of data incidents that require legal action, a significant increase in the speed and quality of information processing, or an improvement in the security of data.

Aside from the tangible benefits, a well-implemented data governance program can help to enhance the reputation of an organisation in the eyes of customers and the general public. This will ultimately lead to increased customer trust and long-term retention. In addition, it can be used as a competitive advantage when attracting new business.

The agreement will make it easier for mainland companies to store and process data in Hong Kong, as it bypasses restrictions on data exports imposed by the Chinese government. This will help to boost demand for data centres in the city, reinforcing its goal of becoming a regional data hub.

Sun also reassured local residents that their privacy will remain protected, as current laws concerning individual privacy are still in place and strict regulations are in place on exporting data out of the city. However, this is not to say that Hong Kong will allow itself to become a data dump. The influx of mainland data will have to be managed carefully, and the city has to offer the right incentives for mainland operators to come and operate here.

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