NPC works with DOH on COVID-19 contact tracing, issues privacy guidelines

The National Privacy Commission (NPC) is working closely with the Department of Health (DOH) to ensure that contact tracing efforts won’t violate any data privacy.

In a statement, the NPC said “collect what is necessary but disclose only to proper authorities. Likewise, companies and government agencies are mandated to implement appropriate and reasonable security measures always.”

“We believe successful contact tracing can only happen when there’s mutual trust between public health authorities and the citizenry,” Commissioner Raymund Liboro said. “The public must give accurate information for contact tracing to be effective. But for the public to respond, they must rely on authorities to balance the risks to their rights and security and the promised benefits to public health, with the assurance that their data is processed fairly, lawfully, and securely.”

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The NCP also recognizes the importance of data quality to enable health authorities curb the spread of the virus.

On April 17, the DOH released a memorandum that contains provisions on how to properly conduct effective contact tracing while being mindful of data privacy and rights of data subjects.”