The Personal Data (Privacy) Ordinance provides for the appointment of
a Privacy Commissioner for Personal Data to monitor, supervise and promote
compliance with the ordinance. The Office of the Privacy Commissioner
for Personal Data (PCO) began full operation in December 1996.
In 2003, the PCO handled 15 782 enquiries
and 1 176 complaints, and conducted eight compliance checks
in relation to the ordinance.
Following a public consultation and discussions with
the banking industry, in January 2003 the PCO issued the report on the
broader sharing of consumer credit data and gazetted in May the revised
Code of Practice on Consumer Credit Data which took effect from June 2.
The revised Code of Practice was intended to address the community's concerns
about the probable loss to the local economy caused by the rising trend
of personal bankruptcy and consumer debt.
In December, the PCO issued the Report on the Public
Consultation in Relation to the Draft Code of Practice on Monitoring and
Personal Data Privacy at Work. Apart from reporting on the feedback collected,
the PCO also responded to concerns raised during the consultation and
set out the future course of action on the subject with a view to striking
a balance between the interests of both employers and employees.
To enhance the general public's understanding of the
ordinance, the PCO had continued to produce several newsletters and pamphlets.
The office also undertook a variety of activities to foster a culture
of respecting one another's privacy. The activities included public seminars,
plenary meetings of the Data Protection Officers' Club, workshops for
semi-finalists in the Privacy Protection in Action: TV Advertisement
Competition and a drama performance.