Under the requirements laid out in the Personal Data Protection Act (PDPA), every organisation is required to appoint at least one individual as the organisation’s Data Protection Officer (DPO). The DPO’s business contact information (BCI) has to be made publicly available. The DPO may be a person whose scope of work solely relates to data protection or a person in the organisation who takes on this role as one of his multiple responsibilities.
The PDPA does not require the DPO to be based locally in Singapore. The DPO may also not be an employee of the organisation. The organisation may also outsource this function to a third party. The DPO’s BCI provided must be reachable whenever a member of the public in Singapore attempts to contact him or her. This is to comply with PDPA requirements.
With effect from 28th March 2020, all business entities registered with the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (this includes sole-proprietorships, partnerships, limited partnerships, limited liability partnerships and companies) can register and update their DPO’s BCI via ACRA’s Bizfile+ portal.
Do note that the DPO registration in ACRA’s Bizfile+ or via the Personal Data Protection Commission’s (PDPC’s) website is voluntary. However, there is a requirement for every business entity to make its DPO’s BCI available to the public. As Bizfile+ is accessible by the public, any entity that registers its DPO in Bizfile+ would have fulfilled this requirement as set out in the PDPA. If you, as an entity, have already registered your DPO with the PDPC, you may register your DPO in Bizfile+ again to ensure that the entity’s DPO’s details are accurate and updated.
For us, we would encourage clients to lodge their DPO’s BCI in Bizfile+ as this would satisfy the requirement as spelt out in the PDPA.
Do note that there are consequences for breaching the PDPA.
When in doubt, seek legal advice or consult an experienced ACRA Filing Agent.
The editorial team at Singapore Secretary Services
For more useful articles and videos, visit the Singapore Secretary Services resource page.