Panel: Need free speech, privacy balance for right to be forgotten

Panel: Need free speech, privacy balance for right to be forgotten

NEW DELHI: A government-appointed panel on data protection law has pointed to the need to have a balanced approach on right to be forgotten.

The appropriateness of a right to be forgotten in specific circumstances would require that the right to privacy be balanced with the freedom of speech, the Justice BN Srikrishna Committee said. It called right to confirmation, access and correction to be included in the data protection law.

The panel recommended that the right to object to processing, right to object to direct marketing, right to object to decisions based on solely automated processing, and the right to restrict processing need not be provided in the law.

The right to be forgotten may be adopted, with the adjudication wing of the Data Processing Authority (DPA) determining its applicability on the basis of a five-point criteria.

This includes (i) the sensitivity of the personal data sought to be restricted, (ii) the scale of disclosure or degree of accessibility sought to be restricted, (iii) the role of the data principal in public life (whether the data principal is publicly recognisable or whether they serve in public office), (iv) the relevance of the personal data to the public (whether the passage of time or change in circumstances has modified such relevance for the public), and (v) the nature of the disclosure and the activities of the data company (whether the fiduciary is a credible source or whether the disclosure is a matter of public record; further, the right should focus on restricting accessibility and not content creation).

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