March 11th, 2013 (InsideCostaRica.com) Following the lead of other countries, Costa Rica now has its own laws on the storing, sharing, and access of personal information, after Law #8968 was published in the official Gazette last Tuesday.
Under the law, individuals must now provide their express consent for the collection of their personal information in databases, and individuals will have the right to revoke that consent at any time.
The guidelines, which explain the scope of the law that was adopted in 2011, include for the first time the “right to informational self-determination,” which is defined as the right of every individual to know what personal information of theirs is collected in databases, and for what purpose.
The only exceptions are in cases where there is a court order, or when a resolution is adopted by a special committee of the Legislative Assembly.
The law also does not pertain to information that is normally public in Costa Rica, such as a person’s name and cedula number, which are commonly accessible in the Civil Registry.
The law says that personal information cannot be stored for more than 10 years, with some exceptions, and empowers residents to correct or remove information from databases.