does not produce an absurd or impractical result, bearing in mind that the
primary purpose of the Ordinance is to protect individuals’ right to privacy
in relation to their personal data. When in doubt, he is inclined to take the
line which results in providing such protection.
The Commissioner will attempt to apply a consistent interpretation in
dealing with complaints and enquiries. However, the Commissioner may
find it necessary to reconsider a stance he has previously adopted in light
of his regulatory experience and changes in circumstances.
circumstances may include amendments to the Ordinance; the possibility
that an interpretation previously adopted may later be shown to be
erroneous or incomplete by the Court or the AAB; views of judicial
authorities; and developments in the handling and processing of personal
data and social values.
Statements made or views expressed in this Book are intended for
reference only. They shall not give rise to any liability on the part of the
Commissioner nor to any defence or estoppel of any kind in proceedings
involving the Commissioner. They shall not bind the Commissioner in the
exercise of his statutory functions in any way. Readers are urged to exercise
independent judgment on the interpretation of the data protection
principles in any given situation and, where appropriate, to seek
Abbreviations Used in This Book
“AAB” means the Administrative Appeals Board established under section 5
of the Administrative Appeals Board Ordinance (Cap 442, Laws of Hong
“Amendment Ordinance” means the Personal Data (Privacy) (Amendment)
“Book” means this book.
“Commissioner” means the office of the Privacy Commissioner for Personal
Data established under section 5(1) of the Personal Data (Privacy)
Ordinance (Cap 486, Laws of Hong Kong) in general and where the
context otherwise permits, also means and includes the person appointed
by the Chief Executive under section 5(3).
“DPP” means data protection principle(s).
“Eastweek case” means the case of Eastweek Publisher Limited & Another
v Privacy Commissioner for Personal Data  2 HKLRD 83.