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: 0008/2010/IP

Title: Mobile Video Traffic Monitoring System

Reason: Active intervention

Brief:

    In February 2010, the media reported that the Transport Bureau and the Macau Public Security Police Force had used a “Mobile Video Traffic Monitoring System” for on-site recording of the traffic situation on the public roads.
  As the incident aroused public concern as to whether it breached “Personal Data Protection Act”, this Office (GPDP) decided to take the initiative and file a case for follow-up.

Analysis:

    In accordance with the provisions in articles 4.1.(1) and 3.1 of the Personal Data Protection Act, the data processing involved in this case is within the scope of regulation by the said Act.
  As both the Transport Bureau and the Macau Public Security Police Force are data controllers. They must comply with the “Personal Data Protection Act” and observe the relevant obligations.
  According to the information provided by the Transport Bureau, the “Mobile Video Traffic Monitoring System” was installed in order to make it easier for the departments involved to take the appropriate measures to alleviate road congestion in road traffic operations.
  According to the information provided by the two government departments, both of them have developed some sort of data security measures.
  GPDP believed that the system was capable of immediately obtaining all information on local traffic conditions, allowing for the proper implementation of traffic control measures and the improvement of the traffic situation in Macao.
  According to the Organic Laws of the two abovementioned government departments, as well as the relevant terms of the “Road Traffic Act”, the use of “Mobile Video Traffic Monitoring System” to monitor road traffic conditions and the personal data processing are part the duties of these departments and carried out in the public interest. They therefore conform to the terms of Article 6.(4) of the “Personal Data Protection Act”. Regarding the alleged illegal activities and criminal and administrative offences allegedly caused by the system, the two abovementioned government departments were only trying to carry out their duties in the public interest in order to achieve legitimate interests. The rights, freedom and security of the data subject cannot override the aforementioned legitimate interests. Therefore, the relevant data processing by the two government departments was carried out in line with the terms of Article 8.2 of the “Personal Data Protection Act”.
  Regarding the sensitive data (such as information on the personal life, religious beliefs and health of the data subjects), even though the two bureaus acted in accordance to the regulation of Article 7.2.(1) of the Personal Data Protection Act when they exercised their authority to handle the sensitive data from the images taken from the public roads, the two government departments shall still need to protect the data pursuant to the principle of non-discrimination, along with the same security measures specified in Article 16 of the same Act. Regarding the images taken outside of public roads, the two bureaus do not have legitimacy to process them. The processing of such information was in fact contrary to the original purpose of the system; in other words it did not conform to the purpose of monitoring the use of public roads, which went beyond the purpose of collecting and handling the data.
  In summary, although the two government departments appropriately handled the images taken on public roads by the “Mobile Video Traffic Monitoring System”, they inappropriately processed sensitive information taken outside the sphere of public roads.

Result:

    The two bureaus already stopped using the “Mobile Video Traffic Monitoring System” for motorcycles. The systems installed on police vehicles would only perform fixed-point monitoring. GPDP reminded the two government departments that they still need to pay attention to other issues such as the location and the angles of the cameras, among other issues.

Reference:
Please refer to "Personal Data Protection Act", articles 3,4,5,6,7,8,16 .

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