The hospitality sector, which includes OTAs, hotels, and other establishments, manages significant amounts of personal data. With the implementation of the Digital Personal Data Protection Act, 2023 (DPDP Act) in India, this sector faces new challenges and opportunities in data protection. Read ahead to understand the key aspects of how the hospitality sector can ensure compliance with the DPDP Act, with a focus on Identity Verification and KYC (Know Your Customer) APIs.
The Complexity of Data Protection in the Hospitality Sector
- Complex Ownership Structures: The hospitality sector has intricate ownership involving franchisors, individual or group owners, operator/management companies. This makes the movement of personal data across systems complex and potentially vulnerable.
- Data Breach Consequences: International examples, such as a breach in a prominent hotel chain affecting over 300 million guests, remind the hospitality sector of potential risks and the necessity of compliance with regulations like GDPR and DPDP Act.
Key Considerations in the DPDP Act
- Fiduciary vs Processors: The Act recognizes data fiduciaries and processors. In the complex ownership structures of hospitality, demarcating responsibilities and ensuring compliance through robust agreements is vital.
- Extraterritorial Applicability: The Act has limited extraterritorial reach, extending to data processed outside India only in connection with certain activities.
- Privacy Policies and Data Mapping: Establishing consistent privacy policies and conducting data mapping and audits can help in compliance.
- Notice and Consent Mechanisms: Implementing clear and comprehensive notice and consent mechanisms aligns with the Act’s requirements.
- Children’s Data: The processing of data for individuals under 18 requires secure verifiable consent from parents or guardians.
- Data Security Measures: Implementation of robust security measures like encryption and regular assessments is vital to prevent breaches.
- Rights of Data Principals: The Act grants various rights to data principals, including grievance redressal, access, correction, and more.
- Cross-border Data Transfer: Global data transfers must adhere to the DPDP Act, considering possible restrictions and other regulations.
Integration of Identity Verification and KYC APIs
- Enhanced Security: By integrating KYC and identity verification APIs, hospitality businesses can further enhance the security of personal data, aligning with the DPDP Act’s emphasis on safeguarding information.
- Compliance with Verification Requirements: These tools help in obtaining secure verifiable consent, especially concerning children’s data, and ensuring proper authorization for data processing.
- Facilitating Cross-Border Data Transfer: Identity verification can assist in adhering to global compliance requirements, especially where cross-border data transfers are concerned.
- Robust Monitoring and Reporting: KYC enables businesses to better monitor and report on data usage, which is crucial for compliance with the Act’s requirements for transparency, consent management, and purpose limitation.
The DPDP Act presents significant responsibilities and challenges for the hospitality sector. Compliance requires a comprehensive review of existing practices, alignment with new regulations, and possibly the integration of technologies like KYC and identity verification APIs. Data protection is a shared responsibility, and with no specified transition period, immediate and decisive action is required to ensure alignment with the DPDP Act.
Sumanth Kumar is a Marketing Associate at IDcentral (A Subex Company). With hands-on experience with all of IDcentral’s KYC and Onboarding Technology, he loves to create indispensable digital content about the trends in User Onboarding across multiple industries.