Kazakhstan Enacts Central Asia's Second Data Privacy Law

Privacy Laws & Business International Report, Issue 124, pp. 23-24, August 2013

UNSW Law Research Paper No. 2013-59

3 Pages Posted: 3 Sep 2013 Last revised: 1 Apr 2014

See all articles by Graham Greenleaf

Graham Greenleaf

University of New South Wales, Faculty of Law

Date Written: July 14, 2013

Abstract

Kazakhstan’s Law on Personal Data and their Protection, signed into law on May 21, 2013 by President Nursultan Nazarbayev (in office since 1990) will come into effect on November 26, 2013. Kazakhstan thus becomes the second country in Central Asia with a data privacy law, joining the Kyrgyz Republic (Law on Personal Data, 2008), and the 100th jurisdiction globally to enact a data protection law.

This article summarizes the main components of the law, concluding that it does contain the essential components of a data privacy law. The law covers both public and private sectors. It includes a set of data protection principles largely consistent with basic international standards. The law does not create a data protection authority (DPA) but does make provision for civil and criminal penalties for breaches.

The article also considers briefly the position of a data privacy law in an authoritarian state with single-party rule, and no history of respect for civil liberties. Despite its limitations and questionable likelihood of enforcement, the law raises issues to which any companies doing business in or with Kazakhstan must give serious consideration, particularly due to the potential for inconsistent approaches by different government agencies.

Keywords: data protection, privacy, Central Asia, Kazakhstan

Suggested Citation

Greenleaf, Graham, Kazakhstan Enacts Central Asia's Second Data Privacy Law (July 14, 2013). Privacy Laws & Business International Report, Issue 124, pp. 23-24, August 2013; UNSW Law Research Paper No. 2013-59. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2319178

Graham Greenleaf (Contact Author)

University of New South Wales, Faculty of Law ( email )

Sydney, New South Wales 2052
Australia
+61 2 9385 2233 (Phone)
+61 2 9385 1175 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www2.austlii.edu.au/~graham

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