On July 21, 2016 the Chief of Staff approved the Framework Agreement for Cooperation between the Argentine Social Security Administration (“Anses”) and the Secretariat of Public Communications (the “Agreement”), that allows for the electronic exchange of information contained in databases for the purpose of keeping citizens informed of government actions.
Under the Agreement, the Anses will periodically send personal data from its databases to the Secretariat of Public Communications. The personal data includes name, ID No., Tax ID. No., address, telephone number, e-mail, date of birth, marital status, and education level. The Agreement has a 2-year duration.
The Agreement states that the personal data will only be used for the purposes of keeping citizens informed of governmental actions and transmitting important public interest messages.
Before the Agreement was approved, the Data Protection Agency (“DPA”) issued Decision No. 5/2016 expressing its consent to these terms. The DPA held that the Agreement is encompassed by the exception included under Subsection 11.3(c) of Data Protection Law No. 25,326 (“DPL”). This provision allows the assignment of personal data without the consent of the data subject when it is directly conducted between governmental agencies which are acting within their roles. The DPA established that the data involved must coincide with the data that the agencies are permitted to treat in view of their assigned roles, and found no legal impediments in this case.
However, critics of the Agreement point out that the purpose of the original data collection acts as a limit to the exception set by Subsection 11.3(c) of the DPL. That is to say, that the assignment of personal data between governmental agencies can only be conducted in pursue of the specific purpose for which it was collected.
In this regard, federal judge María Jose Sarmiento recently requested the Executive Brach to inform within a 3-day term the reasoning underlying the decree allowing the transfer of the database for keeping citizens informed of governmental actions.