Protection of Personal Information Bill marches on

The Select Committee of the National Council of Provinces have issued a report in which the Protection of Personal Information is accepted and tabled with some minor, mostly cosmetic, changes.

I will be writing about this in the Consumer Law Review, but in short it means that the Bill is now two steps (a vote and a signature) away from being enacted.

Rethinking privacy policies

Increasingly, I find it very difficult to see the point of overly legalistic privacy policies normally hidden behind a tiny link at the bottom of a webpage. The reason for this increased concern is of course the Protection of Personal Information Bill and the duties which it places on businesses who use (or for that matter just collect or store) personal information.

Protection of Personal Information Bill on the move

After months of inaction, a workshop on the Bill is scheduled for 22 May 2013 before the Select Committee on Security and Constitutional Development. Deliberations will take place on 5 June 2013. This is part of the process of getting the Bill approved by the National Council of Provinces. This is the last step before the Bill will be signed into law by the President.


Enactment of the Protection of Personal Information Bill delayed

The latest news on the Bill’s journey through the parliamentary committees is that on 13 February 2013 the NCOP’s Select Committee on Security and Constitutional Development heard more detailed submissions from its content advisor, the drafters from the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development, the SA Law Reform Commisson and the Financial Services Board. See this article on Legalbrief Policy Watch.

New National Consumer Commissioner

It is has been reported that a new National Consumer Commissioner will be appointed by the end of the May. The new Commissioner will replace acting Commissioner Ebrahim Mohamed. This statement was made by the group head of the Department of Trade and Industry during a briefing to the MPs.

Retailers respond to allegations of mislabelled meat

I am not a particularly squeamish person and quite an adventurous eater, but when I eat donkey I would like to know that I am eating donkey. So, I was quite disturbed when I watched the meat mislabelling scandal unfold. This is the most informative article which I found, courtesy of IOL. It contains statements by all the big retailers that their products are all correctly labelled.

Update on POPI's progress

The Protection of Personal Information Bill was approved by the National Assembly in September last year. Before it can become an Act it has to be approved by the National Council of Provinces. The Select Committee on Security and Constitutional Development heard submissions on the Bill from the drafters as well as the SA Law Reform Commission and the FSB.

The Committee has asked for a more detailed briefing of the Bill and from what I can see on the Parliamentary Monitoring Group's webiste this meeting will take place on 4 March 2013.

The impact of POPI on marketers

I am talking at New Media's Contect Conference tomorrow on the implications of the Protection of Personal Information Bill for marketers. Here is a link to an interview which I did in anticipation of this event on

No Junk Mail please

In response to a letter in the Cape Times by Keith Gottschalk we indicated that there is a law that governs junk mail in your letterbox, but that the enforcement of the law is the problem at the moment. The full letter (as published in the Cape Times on the 10th January 2013) follows:

Free chapter on marketing law (Siber Ink)

I am currently writing a book, Consumer Law Unlocked, for Siber Ink publishers. If all goes well it will be published this year. Here is a free chapter on marketing. Back to work.


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