Privacy Commission now allows e-hearings

The National Privacy Commission (NPC) has adopted videoconferencing to reduce the risks of coronavirus infections posed by face-to-face hearings.

Advisory 2020 - 02 or the "Guidelines on the Use of Videoconferencing Technology for the Remote Appearance and Testimony of Parties Before the NPC" took effect on the day it was issued on 3 August.

The guidelines detail the proceedings, and proper conduct of e-hearings and post-hearings.

"Videoconferencing will enable the NPC to maintain a safe workplace while ensuring a continuous delivery of our service. This can also provide stakeholders convenience and cut down on their travel cost," NPC Commissioner Raymund Liboro said.

The e-hearings can be conducted for all quasi-judicial proceedings, such as discovery conferences, summary hearings, mediation conferences, investigations and clarificatory hearings.

Parties to the complaint or investigation who may wish to avail themselves of e-hearing shall express their written consent in the manner prescribed in the new guidelines.

"Rest assured that e-hearings shall be conducted in a secure and reliable videoconferencing platform, and that standard practices on collection, storage and disposal of personal data are observed," Liboro said.

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