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Policy Proposals  Industrial Technology Opinion on reform of systems including the Act on Protection of Personal Information

February 17, 2015

Companies in the world are engaged in gathering, accumulating and analyzing vast amounts of information (so-called big data) as well as in the race for innovative ways to utilize and apply them. This means the utilization and application of data is directly linked to competitive strength. As there are no clear rules for handling personal data, business operators have become hesitant and consumers have grown anxious. This situation, derived from the rapid advancement of information and communication technologies, was not something envisioned at the time the Act on the Protection of Personal Information was enacted.

Under these circumstances, in June 2013, the Japanese government came up with a plan to introduce a data utilization and application environment of the world's highest standard and in December 2014 released a draft outline of a bill to revise the personal information protection law.

As the revision is expected to take place during the current Diet session, Keidanren has formulated its opinions on the matter.


(1) Promotion of data utilization and application

As a measure to promote the handling of big data, the Japanese government has newly defined personal information that has been processed to protect the identity of an individual as anonymized data. Keidanren requests that the processing standard and related elements be an appropriate requisite that also takes into consideration the operational burden involved.

(2) Administration of personal information protection

Currently, there are ministries in charge of industrial issues based on their laws, but a third-party organization (privacy commissioner) which will handle the administration of personal information and integrate enforcement by ministries will be established. It is essential to avoid overlapped enforcement between the related ministries and the new third-party organization.

(3) Facilitating smooth transfer of data to overseas

In terms of providing personal data to a third party abroad, Keidanren asks for measures that fit practical situations so that there would not be any obstruction to operations such as providing information to group companies located overseas and cloud or outsourcing services.

[Industrial Technology Bureau]

Industrial Technology