Governance & Risk Management , Privacy , Video

Navigating the Privacy Landscape Across APAC, EU and US

CIO and CISO Strategies for Complying With Various Privacy Regulations in APAC
Tarun Samtani, DPO and privacy program director, International SOS; Golda Benjamin, campaigner, APAC, Access Now; and Jam Jacob, executive director, LIGHTS Institute

While the concept of protecting citizens' privacy through government regulations is growing in popularity in the APAC region, lawmakers must understand the many nuances of similar regulations in the European Union and the United States. Three experts - Golda Benjamin, APAC campaigner for Access Now, Tarun Samtani, DPO and privacy program director at International SOS, and Jam Jacob, executive director with LIGHTS Institute, share their perspective on Asia's privacy road map.

See Also: The Biggest & Boldest Data Breaches & Insider Threats of 2023

"In the APAC region, privacy comes more from the security side of things. APAC has been more inclined toward that, at least on the data security aspect. Privacy is definitely gaining huge momentum here. So, it is a massive change," Samtani said.

He also pointed out how legislation in APAC is structured differently than in the EU. "Unlike the EU, which is governed by the GDPR, APAC is fragmented and each country has its own law, which is very different from each other."

The growing number of data protection laws in APAC often leads to problems for CISOs and CIOs. "This is a big concern for CIOs, CISOs and DPOs. Businesses these days end up operating in multiple jurisdictions. Keeping up with all new policies and the changes that they go through is tough for a DPO or a CIO," Jacob said.

In the coming years, Benjamin said, privacy will be viewed beyond the threat of compliance action. "Privacy will not remain only in the framework of fear. My hope is that businesses will look at privacy as an economic advantage and legal management strategy. Hopefully, the government, too, will uphold privacy and give it equal importance."

In this video interview with Information Security Media Group, the panelists also discussed:

  • Whether privacy and information security should be treated separately;
  • How CISOs and CIOs can navigate the various privacy laws in the region;
  • The future of the privacy landscape in APAC.

Benjamin is Access Now's campaigner for Asia-Pacific, currently with a regional focus on Southeast Asia. She previously served as chief of legislation for a senator and as a legal consultant to three ministries in the Philippines on agrarian reform, the environment and finance.

Samtani is a privacy leader with a background in data security, privacy and data protection. He formerly served as global privacy manager for Qantas Group, which includes Qantas Airlines, Jetstar Airlines and Qantas Loyalty.

Jacob, a recognized authority on data protection, is an IAPP Fellow of information privacy and a certified senior lead implementer of privacy information management systems. He has spent more than a dozen years working on data protection and 14 years practicing law.

About the Author

Suparna Goswami

Suparna Goswami

Associate Editor, ISMG

Goswami has more than 10 years of experience in the field of journalism. She has covered a variety of beats including global macro economy, fintech, startups and other business trends. Before joining ISMG, she contributed for Forbes Asia, where she wrote about the Indian startup ecosystem. She has also worked with UK-based International Finance Magazine and leading Indian newspapers, such as DNA and Times of India.

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