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Data Law Navigator | Albania

Information on Data Protection and Cyber Security laws from CMS experts

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The content will be periodically updated by our lawyers but, given the constantly evolving laws in this area, we cannot guarantee the content is complete and accurate.
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Data Protection 

Last reviewed March 2020

Risk scale 

Laws

Law n. 9887 dated 10.03.2008 “On protection of personal data”.

Authority

The Commissioner for the Right to Information and Protection of Personal Data is the independent authority in charge of supervising and monitoring the protection of personal data and the right to information by respecting and guaranteeing the fundamental human rights and freedoms in compliance with the law.

Anticipated changes to law:

Law no. 48/2012 "On some additions and changes to the law no. 9887, dated 10.3.2008" On the protection of personal data ", dated 08.05.2012.

Law no. 120/2014 "On some additions and changes to the law no. 9887, dated 10.3.2008" On the protection of personal data ", dated 18.9.2014.

Scope

This law shall apply to the processing of personal data, wholly or partly by automatic means and to the processing by other means of a personal data stored in a filing system, or are intended to form part of a filing system. 

This law shall apply to the processing of personal data by:

  1. controllers established in the Republic of Albania;
  2. diplomatic missions or consular offices of the Albanian state;
  3. controllers who are not established in the Republic of Albania, making use of any equipment situated in the Republic of Albania; 

In circumstances stipulated in point (3), the controller designates a representative established in the territory of Albania. Stipulations of this law applying to controllers are also applicable to their representatives. This law applies also to the public authorities that process personal data.

This law is not applicable to processing of data: 

  1. by a natural persons for purely personal or family purposes;
  2. only in case the information is provided about public officials or public (state) administration servants, reflecting their public, administrative activities or issues related to their duties.

Penalties/Enforcement

Cases of data processing in contradiction with the provisions of this law do not constitute any criminal offence and are subject to a fine.

The Fines shall be imposed by the Commissioner when he finds that the obligations set forth in the law are infringed.

Registration / Notification

Registration and the notification must contain the following information:

  1. name and address of the controller;
  2. the purpose of processing personal data;
  3. categories of data subjects and categories of personal data;
  4. recipients and categories of recipients of personal data;
  5. the proposal for international transfers that the controller intends to carry out;
  6. a general description of the measures for the security of personal data(this is not part of the registration)

The responsibility to notify

Every controller shall notify the Commissioner about the processing of personal data for which he is responsible. The notification shall be made before the controller processes the data for the first time, or when a change of the processing notification status is required.

The processing of personal data the sole purpose of which is to keep a record, which in accordance with the law or sub-legal acts provides information for the public in general, is exempted from the obligation to notify the processing of data. Data that are processed for the purpose of protection of the constitutional institutions, interests of national security, foreign policy, economic or financial interests of the state, prevention or prosecution of the criminal offences are exempted from the obligation to notify. 

Other cases on which notification is not necessary are established under a decision of the Commissioner.

Main obligations and processing requirements

Protection of personal data is based on: 

  1. a processing that is fair and lawful; 
  2. a collection for specific, clearly defined and legitimate purposes and shall be processed in a way that is compatible with these purposes; 
  3. adequate data, which are relevant to the purpose of their processing and not excessive in relation to such purpose; 
  4. accurate data, and where necessary, updated; every reasonable step must be taken to ensure that data which are inaccurate or incomplete, having regard to the purposes for which they were collected or for which they are further processed, are erased or rectified;
  5. keeping data in a form that allows the identification of data subjects for no longer than it is necessary for the purpose for which they were collected or further processed;

The controller is in charge for applying these requirements to all kinds of processing of data, be it automatically or by other means.

The personal data may be processed only if:

  • Personal data subject has given his consent;
  • Processing is necessary for the performance of a contract to which the data subject is party or in order to negotiate or amend a draft/contract at the request of the data subject;
  • in order to protect the vital interests of the data subject;
  • to comply with a legal obligation of the controller;
  • for the performance of a legal task of public interest or in exercise of powers of the controller or of a third party to whom the data are disclosed;
  • processing is necessary for the protection of the legitimate rights and interests of the controller, the recipient or any other interested party. However, in any case, processing of personal data cannot be in clear contradiction with the data subject right to protection of personal life and privacy.

Processing of personal data in the framework of crime prevention and prosecution activities, in cases of a criminal offence against the public order and other violations in the field of criminal law, defence and national security, shall be performed by official authorities as stipulated in the law. 

In the event, the controller or processor carries out personal data processing for the purpose of offering business opportunities or services provided that the data were taken from a public list of data. 

The controller or processor cannot process further the data specified in this paragraph, if the data subject has expressed his disagreement or has objected their further pro- cessing. No additional personal data is attached to the data specified above without the consent of the data subject. 
The controller is allowed to keep in its own filing system the personal data.

Such data can be used only if the data subject gives his content.

Collection of personal data which is related to a data subject solely for reasons of direct marketing is allowed only if the data subject has given his explicit consent.

Obligations of the Controller and Processor

  • Obligation to Inform;
  • Obligation to rectify and erase;
  • Obligations of the Processor;

Data subject rights

  • Right to Access;
  • The right to request blocking, rectification and erasure;
  • Automated Decision;
  • The right of the data subject to refuse;
  • The right to complain;
  • Compensation of the damage.

Processing by third parties

Not allowed

Transfers out of country  

International transfer 

The international transfer of personal data is done with recipients from states which have an adequate level of personal data protection. The level of personal data protection for a state is established by assessing all circumstances related to processing, nature, purpose and duration of processing, country of origin and final destination, legal provisions and security standards in force in the recipient state. States that have an adequate level of data protection are assessed under a decision of the Commissioner. International transfer of personal data with a state that does not have an adequate level of personal data protection may be done when: 

  1. it is authorised by international acts ratified by the Republic of Albania and are directly applicable; 
  2. data subject has given his/her consent for the inter-national transfer; 
  3. the transfer is necessary for the performance of a contract between the data subject and the controller or for the implementation of pre-contractual measures taken in addressing the data subject’s request, or the transfer is necessary for the conclusion or performance of a contract between the controller and a third party, in the interest of the data subject;
  4. it is a legal obligation of the controller; 
  5. it is necessary for protecting vital interests of the data subject; 
  6. it is necessary or constitutes a legal requirement over an important public interest or for exercising and protecting a legal right;
  7. transfer is done from a register that is open for consultation and provides information to the general public. 

Exchange of personal data to the diplomatic representations of foreign governments or international institutions in the Republic of Albania shall be considered an international transfer of data. 

International transfer of data that need to be authorized 

In cases other than those provided herein, the international transfer of personal data with a state that does not have an adequate level of data protection, shall be carried out upon an authorization from the Commissioner, if adequate safeguards are foreseen with respect to the protection of the privacy and fundamental human rights and freedoms, as well as regarding the exercise of the corresponding rights. 

The Commissioner, after making an assessment, un- der the specification provided herein may give the authorization for transfer of personal data to the recipient State by defining conditions and obligations. 

The Commissioner issues instructions in order to allow certain categories of personal data international transfer to a state that does not have an adequate level of personal data protection. In these cases, the controller is exempted from the authorization request. 

The controller shall submit a request for authorisation to the Commissioner prior to the data transfer. In the authorization request, the controller shall guarantee the observance of the interests of the data subject to protection of confidentiality outside the Republic of Albania.

Data Protection Officer  

The Commissioner

Security    

The controller or the processor shall take appropriate organizational and technical measures in order to protect personal data from unlawful or accidental destruction, accidental loss, from access or disclosure to unauthorized persons, especially when the processing of data takes place in a network, as well as from any other unlawful form of processing. 

The controller shall take the following special security measures: 

  1. defines the functions of the organizational units and those of the operators as regards the use of data;
  2. data shall be used with the order of authorized organizational units or operators; 
  3. instructs all operators concerning their obligations, in conformity with this law and the internal regulations on data protection, including the regulations on data security;
  4. Prohibits access of unauthorized persons to the working facilities of the data controller or processors;
  5. data and programmes shall be accessed only by authorized persons;
  6. Prohibits access to the filing system and their use by unauthorized persons; 
  7. Operation of the data processing equipment shall be carried out upon authorization and every device shall be secured with preventive measures against unauthorized operation;
  8. records and documents the alteration, rectification, erasure, transfer, etc. 

The controller is obliged to document the technical and organizational measures adjusted and implemented to ensure protection of personal data in compliance with the law and other legal regulations. 

The data recorded shall not be used for different purposes which are not compliant with the purpose of col- lection. Acquaintance with or processing of the data registered in files for a purpose other than the right to enter the data shall be prohibited. In case data are used to guarantee national security, public security, for prevention or investigation of a criminal offence, or prosecution of the author thereof, or of any infringement of ethics for the regulated professions, it is exempted from this rule. 
Documentation of the data shall be kept for as long as it is necessary for the purpose for which they were collected.

The security level shall be in compliance with the nature of personal data processing. Detailed rules on data security shall be specified by decision of the Commissioner. 
Procedures for the administering of the data registration, data entry, their processing and disclosure shall be regulated by a decision of the Commissioner.

Controllers, processors and persons who come to know the content of the processed data while exercising their duty, shall remain under obligation of confidentiality and credibility even after termination of their functions. These data shall not be disclosed save when otherwise provided by law. Everyone acting under the authority of the controller or the processor shall not process the personal data on which he/she has access, without the authorization f the controller, unless it is mandatory by law.

Direct marketing    

Collection of personal data which is related to a data subject solely for reasons of direct marketing is allowed only if the data subject has given his explicit consent.

The data subject has the right to demand the controller not to start processing, or if processing has started, to stop processing of personal data related to him for the purposes of direct marketing and to be informed in advance before personal data are disclosed for first time for such purpose.

Useful links    


Cyber Security 

Last reviewed March 2020

Risk scale 

Laws and regulations    

Law n. 2/2017 “For cyber security”, dated 09.02.2017

Application 

This law is applied to communication networks and information systems, the violation or destruction of which would affect the health, safety, wealth of citizens and the effective functioning of the economy in the Republic of Albania.

Excluded from the application of this law are electronic communications networks and information systems that are subject to legal regulations in force for electronic signature, electronic identification and trusted services, electronic communications networks and information systems that process, archive or transmit classified information of the state, as well as electronic communications networks and information systems, as far as it is provided in the legislation on electronic communications in the Republic of Albania.

Authority

The National Computer Security Agency (ALCIRT) is the central authority for identifying, anticipating and taking measures to protect against computer threats / attacks, in accordance with applicable law.

Key obligations 

The responsible authority has the following competencies in the field of cyber security:

  • to determine the cyber security measures;
  • to act as a central point of contact at the national level for the responsible operators in the field of cyber security and coordinate the work to solve cyber security issues;
  • to manage incident reports in the cyber security sector and ensure their storage and registration;
  • to provide methodological assistance and support to the responsible operators in the field of cyber security;
  • to perform analyzes for the weaknesses found in the field of internet security;
  • to perform awareness and education activities in the field of cyber security;
  • to act in the capacity of national CSIRT.

The Authority coordinates its activities with security and defense institutions and cooperates with sectoral CSIRTs and international authorities in the cyber security sector, through joint agreements, in accordance with applicable law.

Penalties/enforcement

Corrective measures; Administrative offenses; Administrative sanctions.

Is there a national computer emergency response team (CERT) or computer security incident response team (CSIRT)? 

Yes

Is there a national incident management structure for responding to cyber security incidents?

Yes, Computer Security Incident Response Teams (CSIRTs) are made up of computer security specialists at each operator that manages critical information infrastructure.

Other cyber security initiatives 

With NATO membership and progress towards EU membership, Albania is increasingly an active part of cyber security initiatives and programs and must meet its commitments to allied countries.
Initiatives in the Field of Information Society in SNSHI (Intersectoral Strategy for the Information Society), as follows:

  • Securing children online and encouraging and coordinating the process for codes of conduct;
  • Establishment of the National Agency for Computer Security (ALCIRT)
  • Establishment of PKI (public key government infrastructure) infrastructure and provision of secure services

Useful links

 

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Authors

Mirko Daidone
Managing Partner
Tirana
Evis Zaja
Evis Zaja
Local Partner
Tirana
Besnik Duraj
Local Partner
Tirana