PNG Government lacks Data Governance and Protection Policy, Puts citizens at Risk

 Papua New Guinea (PNG) government over the years lacked a Data Governance and Protection policy, thus putting critical government data and that of the citizens at risk.

In the face of a rapidly evolving, technology-driven world, responsible data governance and protection are critical for building a sustainable and inclusive digital ecosystem in PNG.

Despite being a part of the wider global community that is driven by technology, and dealing with huge volumes of data on daily basis, the PNG government lacked a critical piece of policy to provide a legal framework for data protection and governance over the years.

Without proper regulation, the government and the people of PNG face the risk of misuse, mishandling, or unauthorized access to personal data that can lead to privacy violations, identity theft, and other cybercrimes, some of which have already been reported.

It also undermines trust in the government and adds to hindering the country's economic growth and development. The government understood this and through the Department of Information and Communications Technology released the draft 'National Data Governance and Protection Policy' for public consultation.

Secretary Steven Matainaho affirms that the "policy provides a much-needed legal framework for data protection and governance, which can help build trust and transparency in the country's digital economy"

The policy is said to benefit various stakeholders, including government agencies, the wider business community, and individual citizens.

For government agencies, the policy provides a legal framework for data protection and governance, ensuring compliance with the guidelines for the responsible use, management, and governance of data.

It also helps government agencies to mitigate risks associated with increased data use, including data breaches and misuse, by providing clear guidelines on how data should be collected, stored, processed, and used.

For the wider business community, the policy provides a level of certainty and clarity around the management and use of data. It will help businesses to comply with legal requirements related to data privacy and governance, enabling them to build trust with customers, partners, and stakeholders.

For individual citizens, the policy protects their privacy rights and ensures transparency, accountability, and responsible use of their personal data. The policy recognizes the importance of promoting data literacy and building capacity in data management, which will ultimately benefit individual citizens in terms of their privacy, security, and protection from potential data breaches.

The National Data Governance and Protection Policy of PNG is a critical milestone in the country's digital transformation efforts as it pushes towards building a robust digital economy that is not only safe and secure but one that is productive where everyone thrives now and into the future.

Source : Exepreneur Magazine

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