Minister for Communications of Ghana, Ursula Owusu-Ekuful stressed here on Thursday the need for a more compatible cross-border data protection regime to protect privacy and personal data usage in global e-commerce.

Opening the second Ghana International Data Protection Conference, organized by the Data Protection Commission, the minister noted that although personal data is the fuel that drives commercial activity online in today’s digital world, concerns about privacy and security of information keep increasing.

“As the global economy shifts into a connected information space, the relevance of data protection and the need for controlling privacy will further increase,” she urged.

According to her, “Understanding different approaches to and potential avenues for establishing more compatible legal frameworks at national, regional and multilateral levels is important for facilitating international trade and commerce.”

For full benefits and protection of individuals, businesses and states in the digital world, Owusu-Ekuful said a balanced approach is key.

“The rules surrounding data protection and cross-border flows of data affect individuals, businesses and governments alike, making it essential to find approaches that address the concerns of all stakeholders in a balanced manner,” she stressed.

Ghana established the Data Protection Commission (DPC) in 2012 through the passage of the Data Protection Act, 2012 (Act 843) as an independent statutory body to protect the privacy of the individual and personal data by regulating the processing of personal information.

The Commission provides for the process to obtain, hold, use or disclose personal information and for other related issues bordering on the protection of personal data.

Its first Data Protection Conference was held in January 2016, following it up with sensitization workshops and educational activities to bring understanding to stakeholders on the data protection regime.

Executive Director of the DPC, Teki Akuetteh Falconer said the commission continued to receive support and collaboration from partners across the world.

“Data protection is a global issue and looking at the nature of the developments around the world such recognition and collaboration is necessary,” Falconer stated.

In order therefore to foster the necessary international cooperation, the Executive Director said the commission continues to engage as a member of the International Conference of Data Protection and Privacy Commission (ICDPPC), Global Privacy Enforcement Network(GPEN), the Common Thread Network(CTN) and the African Network. Enditem

Source: Xinhua/NewsGhana.com.gh