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Swiss Data Protection Act And General Data Protection Regulation

General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), formulated by the European Union and applicable in the EU and the European Economic Areas. It is a regulation in EU law for data privacy and protection. The GDPR's primary aim is to enhance individuals' control and rights over their personal data and to simplify the regulatory environment for international business.

This particular regulation replaced the directive on the protection of personal data. A wide array of data protection and privacy rights are in the given regulation. The Swiss Data Protection Act, formulated by the Swiss Federal court, does not follow the regulations under the GDPR drafted by the EU. However, one can find a lot of similarities between the two. The Federal Constitution of the Swiss confederation provides the right to privacy. The revised FADP only intends to protect the privacy of natural persons, about whom personal data is processed.

The basic principles of data processing remain unchanged in the new DPA. The DPA continues to deviate from the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR): There, the processing of personal data is generally prohibited unless there is a legal ground such as consent, the performance of a contract, a sufficient legitimate interest or a legal provision in the law.

Switzerland also does not go as far as the GDPR in terms of the requirements for valid consent; essentially nothing changes here compared to the current legal situation in Switzerland, with the exception of a minor change with respect to profiling. The grounds on which data processing activities can be justified remain more or less the same as in the current DPA. The right to impose fines lies with the Cantonal law enforcement authorities (which are not specialised in data protection), and the catalogue of fines has been significantly expanded.

GDPR applies to more companies in more places and protects more data. The DPA applied only to companies that control the processing of personal data (Controllers). The GDPR extended the law to those companies that process personal data on behalf of Controllers (Processors). The fines imposed for the breach of the regulations of the GDPR are greater than the DPA.

The regulator continues to emphasise the need for accountability within organisations and diligent record keeping. Organisations are required to demonstrate compliance with the GDPR. under the DPA the regulator recommended that organisations notify it if they experienced a data breach. However, under the GDPR there is a requirement to notify the regulator and individuals' affected under certain circumstances. Under the DPA, personal data of legal entities are no longer protected, even though certain general protections continue to apply.

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