On the 18 July 2016, the Spanish Data Protection Agency ("SDPA") published a report (Report 0358/2015) (the "Report") which considers whether an individual participating in a selective process of public employees can exercise their right of opposition and prevent the publication of its personal data during the different phases of the selective process.

In the Report the SDPA, taking into account the principles of transparency and publicity that govern these selective processes and guarantee the compliance with the principle of equality, established that individuals cannot prevent the publication of their personal data during the different phases of the selective process.

The SDPA explains in the Report that the publication of personal data that is required to fulfill the transparency and publicity principles cannot be subject to the right of opposition. To assess whether that personal data is required to fulfill the two principles, an assessment should be made, to ensure excessive information is not published and only the information required to comply with the transparency and publicity requirements governing these kinds of selective processes. Moreover, it is assumed that there is implicit consent given by the data subjects through the acceptance of the process conditions and request participation in the same.

The SDPA also examines in the Report the possibility of replacing the name and surname of the candidates by its ID numbers during the different phases of the selective process, and concludes that it is possible to replace the name and surname by the ID number, which is a piece of data that could identify an individual by its own. The SDPA also established that the publication of the ID number complies with the proportionality principle.

Although this only applies to public employees it is a useful illustration of how the SDPA assesses proportionality and should be borne in mind for other instances in which the question of proportionality is raised.

The SDPA's Report can be accessed here (Spanish).