The Italian Data Protection Authority has issued its opinion on the data protection implications relating to the new information duties set forth on employers by legislative decree 104/2022.
On August 13, 2022, legislative decree 104/2022 (“Transparency Act”) has entered into force. It provides for a new set of mandatory information that the employer must communicate to its employees at the time of their onboarding. On January 24, 2023, the Italian Data Protection Authority (“Garante”) issued its opinion about compliance of such new information duties with the provisions of the relevant data protection legislation.
In particular, the focus of the Garante was centered on the mandatory communication that, according to section 4, paragraph 8 of the Transparency Act, the employer must give to the employees if any “decision or monitoring automated system is used for the sake of providing information which is relevant for the hiring, management or termination of the employment relationship, for the assignment of tasks and duties, or for the surveillance, evaluation and fulfillment of contractual duties by the employee”. The Garante has stated that:
- GDPR Sanctions Apply in case of Breach. The implementation of any decision or monitoring automated system must be made in compliance and within the limits set forth by the applicable labor law provisions, and in particular law 300/1970. Such labor law provisions, which allow the implementation of automated systems only if certain conditions occur, must be deemed as providing “more specific rules to ensure the protection of the rights and freedoms in respect of the processing of employees’ personal data in the employment context” (as per section 88, paragraph 2, of the GDPR), and thus non-compliance with them may lead to administrative fines pursuant to section 83 of the GDPR.
- Data Processing Impact Analysis (“DPIA”). The employer, who is subject to the duty of accountability, must assess beforehand if the relevant processing is likely to result “in a high risk to the rights and freedoms of natural persons responsibility”, and thus requires a preliminary data processing impact analysis under section 35 of the GDPR. In such regard, the Garante has clarified that data subjects (i.e., employees) should be deemed as “vulnerable”, and that the processing of their data with automated systems is very likely to meet the conditions that make the DPIA mandatory according to the guidelines on the DPIA issued by the WP 29 on April 4, 2017.
- Compliance with the “privacy by default” and “privacy by design” principles. Employers must implement appropriate technical and organizational measures and integrate the necessary safeguards into the processing so that to protect the rights of data subjects (privacy by design). Moreover, the controller shall ensure that, by default, only personal data which are necessary for the specific purpose of the processing are processed (privacy by default), and should then refrain from collecting personal data that are not strictly related to the specific purpose of the relevant processing.
- Update of the register of processing activities (“ROPA”). The employer must indicate the processing of data through automated systems within his/her ROPA.
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