What is the South Africa POPI Act?
South Africa’s Protection of Personal Information (POPI) Act aims to ensure that organisations operating in South Africa exercise proper care when collecting, storing or sharing personal data.
South Africa’s POPI Act, which became law on 11th April, 2014, requires organisations to adequately protect sensitive data or face large fines, civil law suits or even prison. The Act extends certain rights to data subjects that give them control over how their personal information can be collected, processed, stored and shared.
According to Chapter 11 (Offences, Penalties and Administrative Fines) of the POPI Act:
107. Any person convicted of an offence in terms of this Act, is liable, in the case of a contravention of–
(a) section 100, 103(1), 104(2), 105(1), 106(1), (3) or (4) to a fine or to imprisonment for period not exceeding 10 years, or to both a fine and such imprisonment; or
(b) section 59, 101, 102, 103(2) or 104(1), to a fine or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding 12 months, or to both a fine and such imprisonment.
According to Chapter 11, “a Magistrate’s Court has jurisdiction to impose any penalty provided for in section 107.”