File photo: House of Representatives members hold a plenary session at the legislature building in Jakarta with many participating remotely via video conference. (Beritasatu Photo/Ruht Semiono)

House Enacts Tough Law on Personal Data Protection

BY :MUHAMMAD AULIA & HERU ANDRIYANTO

SEPTEMBER 20, 2022

Jakarta. The House of Representatives on Tuesday enacted the Law on Personal Data Protection that carries tougher jail sentences and fines amid mounting public pressures against data breaches and theft.

The new law's passage also came at a time when government officials and the intelligence community were being humiliated by a suspected hacker who called himself Bjorka and claimed to have breached the president’s correspondence data.

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The Telegram user has recently leaked personal information of Communication Minister Johnny Plate and Chief Investment Minister Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan containing their cellular phone numbers and Covid-19 vaccination status.

Article 67 of the law states that the deliberate and unlawful use of someone else’s personal data is punishable by up to five years in prison and Rp 5 billion in fines.

Leaking other people’s personal data is also considered a serious crime that carries the maximum sentence of four years’ imprisonment and Rp 4 billion fines.

Article 68 says whoever is convicted of forging personal data could face up to six years in prison and Rp 6 billion in fines. In addition, the state is authorized to seize assets and wealth generated from personal data forgery.

If the unlawful use of personal data and other related crimes are committed by a corporation, the sentence is a fine ten times the amount an individual offender has to pay.

However, a convicted corporation could risk asset seizure and permanent closure by the state.

The law was passed unanimously at the House plenary season led by Deputy Speaker Rep. Lodewijk Freidrich Paulus, with 73 lawmakers present in person and 206 others joining remotely via video conference.

Lodewijk, a Golkar Party politician, asked the same question three times: “I’m asking you all: can we enact the Bill on Personal Data Protection into law?” 

No disapproving voice was heard on all occasions from participating lawmakers.

“Thank you!” Lodewijk broke the silence, pounding his gavel.

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