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Italian Data Protection Law badly injured… whoduneit?

Last June 5, 2007 the Italian Camera dei deputati (roughly, a sort of US “lower house” equivalent) passed a law to excuse Small Medium Enterprises (SME) employing no more than 15 people from the enforcement of mandatory security measures to protect personal data. To enter in full force the law need to be approved by the Senate, whose decision is exepcted in the very next weeks.

This law has been proposed because – as matter of fact – from 1996 to present days Italian Data Protection Law has become just a bureaucratic issue, made of form to fill, with no actual attention to substantive issus. And – that is worse – the Italian Data Protection Authority did almost nothing in the last twelve years to stop this trend.

The proposed SME’s exemption arouse the furious reaction of ICT security lobbies who claimed that this law endagers the whole Italian communication network “safety”.  This is a grossly misleading claim since data protection law only deals with a limited subset of data an the security measures related provisions basically provide “paper based security”.

True problem is that – on the contrary – Italian Data Protection Law has been drafted and enforced with a distinctive lack of  “reality check”, whose result is that now the Parliament is stepping back on its foot.

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