The past as a compass for the future

The past as a compass for the future

SMEs and the startup ecosystem in India share concerns about the (retracted) draft Data Protection Bill, 2021 - and the way forward for businesses

Neeta Subbaiah


Appendix - II Interview questionnaire

Submitted Aug 18, 2022

Survey Questionnaire

1. Are you familiar with data regulations and privacy laws around the world, such as the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation or China’s Personal Information Protection Law?

2. What do you know about the Draft Data Protection Bill, 2021?

  • How did you hear about the Bill?
  • What is your primary concern with the Bill? (Data localization, cross-border data transfers, etc.)
  • Why is this of foremost concern to you (or your organization)? How do you see its impact playing out in your company?

3. In your organization/business:

  • Will compliance with the provisions in the Bill impact operational autonomy? How?
  • Do you believe that investments in your business (and others like yours) will be affected due to this Bill? How so?
  • Will systems have to be re-engineered to comply with the provisions in the Bill? Will this affect user experience and quality of service?

4. Based on organization/company domain:

  • Social Media Platforms
  • What will be the long-term effects of social media platforms being held responsible for user-generated content? How does this affect your company specifically?
  • What is the impact of the Bill on the Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021? What are the conflicts that may emerge?

5. What do you think of the ‘privacy by design’ policy as mentioned in the draft Bill?

  • How does this affect your organization/company in terms of operations and compliances?
  • Would you have to adapt to a different workflow or have increased operational burden to comply with transparency measures as listed in the draft?

6. Are your services geared towards individuals under the age of 18 years? If yes:

  • What are the consequences of age gating as prescribed by the Bill, for your product?
  • How do you think that mandatory age verification and parental consent will affect user behaviour?
  • What implementation challenges do you foresee for storage and verification of data under the proposed Bill?

7. How will compliance with the data localization provisions impact your business? Do you anticipate any significant financial, operational, or technical burdens?

8. Do you get requests from the government to share data?

  • How broad are these requests? What does it usually entail sharing?
  • What is the current procedure for data acquisition by the government?
  • To your knowledge, what are the changes in the process that this Bill might bring? Will it impact the existing workflows in your organisation?

9. How critical is cross-border data flow to drive growth and scale for your business?

  • Does regulatory uncertainty create barriers for scaling globally?
  • Does regulatory uncertainty affect investments in your business?

10. What is your opinion on sharing data with central agencies, as prescribed by the Bill?

  • Can this be harmful for businesses? How so?
  • Will such data sharing have an impact on innovation?

11. Do you have clarity about what algorithmic fairness, as provided by the Bill, entails?

  • How will sharing algorithms impact your business? Does this raise concerns about intellectual property?

12. Is it possible to segregate anonymized datasets and personal data on a regular basis? What issues do you foresee in this regard?

  • Is there a risk of re-identification? Does it represent a significant privacy risk to the ecosystem?

13. How does your organization share data with third parties? (Contractual model, part of a group/consortium, facilitated by industry bodies with similar goods, etc.)

  • What are the challenges in operations and compliance that will arise if the Bill comes into effect, as it stands?


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