Skip to content

Media Statements

Media Statement

Date: 28 September 2017

Keep Abreast of International Developments and Foster Cooperation
PCPD to Host International Data Protection Conference in Hong Kong 

(28 September 2017, Hong Kong) The 39th International Conference of Data Protection and Privacy Commissioners (“ICDPPC”) is staged in Hong Kong from 25 to 29 September 2017 at Kowloon Shangri-La, Hong Kong. The Privacy Commissioner for Personal Data, Hong Kong (“PCPD”) is the host of the Conference. With the theme “Connecting West with East in Protecting and Respecting Data Privacy”, the five-day Conference consisted of Closed Session for the ICDPPC members and observers, and Open Session to be attended by all in the data protection community.  

As the host of the 39th ICDPPC, The Privacy Commissioner for Personal Data, Hong Kong, Mr Stephen Kai-yi WONG hosted a Data Protection Authorities’ (DPAs’) Dinner on 26 September 2017 to welcome representatives from the DPAs around the world.

Addressing the dinner, the Guest of Honour Mr Patrick Nip Tak-kuen, Secretary for Constitutional and Mainland Affairs, said, “For the regulation of cross-border transfer of data, data breaches and data security issues, international collaboration is required.  In this regard, thanks to the established network of global data protection authorities, Hong Kong has been able to keep abreast of international developments and trends in privacy protection, and establish cross-border enforcement networks. The Privacy Commissioner actively participates in the work of various international groups of privacy enforcement authorities. 

We in the Government encourage public authorities to take part in communication and exchanges with external counterparts with a view to fostering interoperability and cooperation.  I lend my full support to the work of the Privacy Commissioner and his team.  I encourage them to continue to act as a gatekeeper in safeguarding the personal data privacy right of the public and keep reference to the development of personal data protection in your jurisdictions so that they would be able to update the relevant guidelines and provide advice to the Government in a timely manner.”

Winners of the ICDPPC Global Privacy and Data Protection Awards were also announced during the dinner.  The inaugural awards had attracted 90 entries from data protection and privacy authorities around the world. The PCPD’s “Be SMART Online Thematic Website Enhancement” project won the “Use of online tools” category award. A full list of the winners and runners-up, and their entries, is available here.
 
 
Closed Session and Side Events
At the Closed Session (26 and 27 September), in-depth discussions among the accredited members of ICDPPC focused on the issues of government information sharing. Speakers shared their views on the drivers and barriers to government information sharing, how it could trigger public concerns about discrimination and protection of sensitive information, and what was to be done.

In his closing statements at the Closed Session, the Privacy Commissioner stressed that DPAs, governments, market players and ordinary citizens should work hand in hand to fertilise the Smart Cities and data or digital economy.

Mr Wong stated that DPAs are not merely enforcers of the laws. Instead they should now strengthen their outgoing role as a facilitator and communicator, communicating with different parties with a view to understanding their legitimate interests, their concerns, and their privacy culture. Moreover, data protection authorities are also strategists, as they mediate between seemingly conflicting interests to negotiate the best possible outcomes, and navigate many other disciplines that overlap with privacy, such as cybersecurity. DPAs are educators too because they make great efforts to educate people in protecting their own personal data and respecting others’ personal data privacy.

The Privacy Commissioner concluded by inviting DPAs to expand regulators’ role of communicator across borders and boundaries to connect and unite with counterparts all over the world: “I cannot stress more the need for cooperation, collaboration, interoperability, and interconnectivity amongst data protection authorities.  It is high time we stood united and ready to advocate and foster an improved work plan and road map in protecting and upholding privacy, in the wake of the ever-growing digital and economic developments especially in the emerging economies.” 

During the Conference period, 26 side events were also staged by some 30 corporations and organisations from different sectors of the community on 25 and 27 September, covering a wide range of privacy and data protection topics for global perspectives.

The ICDPPC was first convened in 1979 and has enjoyed the reputation of a major event in the privacy world. This year, the Conference is held again in Hong Kong after 18 years, and is included as one of the celebration events of the 20th anniversary of the establishment of the Hong Kong SAR. 
 
- END -
 
For more information about The 39th ICDPPC, please visit: https://www.privacyconference2017.org




Photo 1: Guest of Honour of The ICDPPC’s Data Protection Authorities’ Dinner, Mr Patrick Nip Tak-kuen, Secretary for Constitutional and Mainland Affairs, delivered his speech. 

Photo 2: As the host of the 39th ICDPPC, the Privacy Commissioner for Personal Data, Hong Kong, Mr Stephen Kai-yi WONG hosted a Data Protection Authorities’ (DPAs’) Dinner on 26 September 2017 to welcome representatives from the DPAs around the world. 

Photo 3: The PCPD’s “Be SMART Online Thematic Website Enhancement” project won the “Use of online tools” category award. The Privacy Commissioner for Personal Data, Hong Kong, Mr Stephen Kai-yi WONG, received the award from the ICDPPC Chair Mr John Edwards. 

Photo 4: Winners of the ICDPPC Global Privacy and Data Protection Awards were announced during the dinner.

Photo 5: Group photo of representatives from the DPAs around the world that attended the Closed Session of the ICDPPC.