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  4. December 2022 - Volume 110
  5. Accessible Public Information and Protected Private Data

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FOCUS December 2022 Volume 110

Accessible Public Information and Protected Private Data


People play active role in society when they are well-informed about government operations and related matters. Access therefore to such public information is an essential requirement. Public services can be demanded, especially by the disadvantaged members of society, provided that appropriate and adequate information on the services and goods are easily available. Corruption as well as discrimination in the delivery of services and goods (including subsidies in light of COVID-19 pandemic) occur whenever public information is withheld. Government officials escape accountability for illegal acts when public information is hidden or destroyed.

On the other hand, governments are bound to protect private data from being improperly accessed or stolen for fraudulent, political and other objectives. The storage of private data in digital form exposes such information to hacking and other means of violating the right to privacy of members of society.

With increasing digitalization of society, freedom to access public information and protection of private data are daily necessities. Such freedom extends to responsible expression of opinion and dissemination of information to the public.