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CNPD can fine municipalities for disclosing personal data of infected COVID-19 on social networks

CNPD (National Data Protection Commission) received several complaints from citizens, infected with COVID-19, who saw their personal, identification and contact data, including children, displayed on the websites and social networks of local authorities. The news, advanced by the Jornal de Notcias, reports on cases initiated to the cases in which the respective evidence was collected, which may give rise to fines of significant amounts to the targeted municipalities. In a specific case, even the patient's ethnicity was published, witnesses report to the newspaper.

According to statements by Isabel Cruz, CNPD's general secretary to the JN, the chambers and parish councils could not even have had access to the identification of the infected people, let alone divulge data that could lead to their exposure, promising administrative offenses to the public entities that did so. .

Some of the municipalities will have already erased their publications, but there was a text from the Nelas chamber, signed by its president, Jos Borges da Silva, which referred to the neighborhood and parish of a certain infected person, with details of his profession and trips he made abroad . The name of a municipality employee who contracted the disease was also disclosed.

The Torres Vedras chamber has also contradicted the CNPD guidelines, publishing the number of infected people per parish daily, even when they present one or two people with COVID-19. The commission states that, even without identifying the patients, health data cannot be published. This is because it is easy to identify people in tiny territorial dimensions.

The debts are linked to the source of the information that reached the municipalities. In certain situations they may have been passed among the population, in the smallest places. The police also have access, in order to apply containment measures. The mayor of Nelas even claimed that the address had been provided by Sade's deputy.