Belgium launches website for checking personal data of citizens

Belgium launches website for checking personal data of citizens

Residents of Belgium can now read for themselves which personal data the government has about them. They can also see what is being done with their personal data via the website ‘ mydata. belgium.be ‘. The website was presented on Thursday by State Secretary for the Protection of Privacy, Mathieu Michel.

The site should be an important instrument to increase trust between the government and citizens. It should also provide citizens with more control over their personal data. This can be read on HLN.be.

Via the MyData website, a Belgian resident gains insight into the information and personal data that the government keeps about him or her. Think of what the Federal Public Service Mobility and Transport does with the data that you have to provide with a number plate application. You can even see what happens with the data you provide when you book a tour in a federal museum, for example.

Big MyData project

The website is the first step in a larger whole. State Secretary Michel: “MyData is the largest transparency project ever carried out by the federal government. This first phase consists of a transparency tool with which every government institution can communicate in a legible and accurate way how it uses personal data.”

The whole project consists of four phases:

  1. The launch of the mydata.belgium website to increase transparency.
  2. Provide an overview of existing government sources. It must also be clear which data is collected for this purpose, by whom and for what reason.
  3. Citizens gain insight into what various government organizations do with their data.
  4. Citizens gain insight into where all their personal data can be found and why.

Moreover, providing information to citizens must take place in a well-protected environment. The aim is to complete the entire project by the end of 2023.

Jack Hamande, Director-General of the Directorate-General for Digital Transformation explains why this project is so important: “Transparency is crucial for citizens. As a government, we must continue to earn citizens’ trust every day by clearly communicating what data we keep about them in government data sources and what we use their data for and within what legal context that happens. We also need to make it as easy as possible for citizens to find the information.”

Cybersecurity is a top priority in Belgium

The MyData project is not the first project of the Belgian government to protect the online privacy of citizens. Prime Minister Alexander De Croo already announced in January that he would invest an extra 78 million euros in the country’s cybersecurity.

The data protection authority in Belgium also acted strongly earlier this month. The chairman of the Belgian GDPR watchdog said at the time: “Brave little Belgium has once again shown that it is not afraid to tackle important issues, like this one, which really concerns all European citizens who shop, work or play online. . Online privacy and the fight against overly intrusive forms of advertising is a top priority for us.”

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