個人資料保護辦公室

Gabinete para a Protecção de Dados Pessoais

Office for Personal Data Protection

Complaint Case Notes
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No: 0009/2009/IP

Title: Household CCTV

Reason: Complaints

Brief:

    Resident X in a residential building claimed that her neighbour Y had installed a CCTV camera at the door of Y’s flat. She claimed that Y had have infringed on personal privacy of other residents in the building. X claimed that this was a violation of the Personal Data Protection Act and filed a complaint to this Office (GPDP).

Analysis:

    Article 3.2 of the Personal Data Protection Act provides, the Act does not apply to the processing of personal data carried out by a natural person in the course of a purely personal or household activity, save those with the purposes of systematic communication and dissemination.
  In GPDP’s opinion, as the building referred to in the complaint is a residential one, GPDP can assume that the flat in question is a residence. If the CCTV camera is installed at the door of the flat, it must be in a quarter of the floor that is common to all the floor’s residents (cf. Article 1324.1.(f) of the Civil Code). An installation like this is presumably owned by the owner or user of the flat, probably for private purposes, such as family security. The camera is presumably pointed at no specific object or person. There is no sign or evidence showing that the owner of the camera is using the images derived from it for systematic communication or public disclosure, as in posting them on the Internet. Given that this is the case, then it is not subject to the Personal Data Protection Act, and GPDP will in general not interfere with it.
  In view of the fact that the installation is found in the building’s common area, it is likely that other residents on the floor (property owners) will find it intruding on their privacy. If so, they may report the case to the property owners’ council, because according to the Civil Code, the council is expected to regulate the use, proceeds, security and conservation of the common area or unit, as well as devise regulations of the use of the building. All property owners of the building have the obligation to abide by the decisions or resolutions made by the council in its capacity, including those regarding issues such as CCTV installation in the common areas of the building. If the council is unable to reach a consensus, while the property owners claim that their interests are being compromised, the property owners can then seek resolution by making a civil law suit to the court.
  In summary, the data processing in this case was not in the scope of regulation by the Personal Data Protection Act

Result:

    GPDP sent a letter to X and informed her of the above mentioned analysis and decision.

Reference:
Please refer to "Personal Data Protection Act", articles 3 .

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