SA's newly established info regulator flooded with complaints, questions

The regulator is supposed to ensure companies and govt departments comply with the POPI Act when it comes into operation in 2018.

Picture: Freeimages.com

CAPE TOWN - South Africa’s newly established Information Regulator is not fully operational yet, but it has already received in excess of 100 complaints or questions about the use of personal data.

The regulator is supposed to ensure companies and government departments comply with the Protection of Personal Information (POPI) Act when it comes into operation in its entirety in 2018.

The five-member body, which was formed in December last year, aims to be in full swing by 2018.

Like any new body, the Information Regulator is starting from scratch.

It has a budget of about R19 million, which officials insist is sufficient for what they need to do right now.
That’ll change once employees are recruited.

But first, the regulator needs to get approvals for its “organisational structure.”

The regulator’s chairperson Pansy Tlakula says while there haven’t been any administrative blockages, things aren’t moving as fast as she would like.

The regulator also intends running awareness campaigns so that people are informed about their rights.

Tlakula says it’s important that people know what to do when their personal information is used for direct marketing without consent.