Over 100 countries and independent jurisdictions and territories around the world have now adopted comprehensive data protection/privacy laws to protect personal data held by private and public bodies. Around 40 countries and jurisdictions have pending bills or initiatives.
The laws in these countries apply to personal information held in both electronic and physical form and to all or nearly all subject areas. In nearly all of the countries, the laws apply to personal information held by private bodies and by governments.
In most countries, an independent data protection or information commission oversee and enforces the laws. Most laws have also included specific exemptions for the media while a few also specifically refer to national right to information laws.
This map shows which jurisdictions have adopted laws or have pending initiatives. This update includes a number of new countries including Mauritania, Niger, Sao Tome, and the Cayman Islands.