Cabinet approves Data Protection Bill, to significantly impact gaming companies once enacted

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The Union Cabinet today approved the Data Protection Bill likely to be presented in the upcoming monsoon session. The initial draft of the Bill was introduced in November 2022 for public consultation. Taking into account the feedback received during these consultations, the draft underwent changes and was also discussed as part of inter-ministerial deliberations.

While the current draft is not yet out, a data protection law is expected to significantly impact gaming platforms. The online gaming platforms store significant personal data for variety of purposes including for age verification, combating frauds, remitting prize money, etc.

Data localisation, segregation of data, purging of data after use, may be some of the compliances that gaming companies will be required to comply with. All entities will have to evaluate on how they deal with personal data going forward once the law is implemented.

As per reports, the Bill proposes to have jurisdiction over the processing of digital personal data in India including data collected online or offline and later digitized. The Bill will also apply to the processing of data outside of India if it involves offering goods or services or profiling individuals in India.

Under the Bill, personal data can only be processed for lawful purposes with the individual’s consent. In certain cases, consent may be implied.

Data fiduciaries which will include gaming companies are required to ensure the accuracy and security of the data and delete it once its purpose has been fulfilled.

The bill proposes to levy hefty penalties of up to Rs 250 crore on entities for every instance of violation of norms in the bill. “The Cabinet has approved the draft of the DPDP bill. It will be tabled in Parliament in the upcoming session,” a source was quoted by PTI.

This is the second attempt by the government to introduce a personal data protection law to the largest country by population. The earlier version of the bill was withdrawn from Parliament after a joint parliamentary committee suggested number of changes.