Kenya to publish draft data protection Bill

Kenya will publish a draft data protection law this month to create safeguards for personal data held by mobile phone-based lenders and others, minister of information, communication and technology Joe Mucheru said yesterday.

It will specify how data can be stored and shared, and will take into account standards set by data protection laws outside Kenya, including in the European Union, Mucheru said.

The government estimates that mobile phone-based financial firms are lending more than 15 billion Kenya shillings ($148.51 million) daily, he said.

“We cannot ignore the fact that we have become a digital economy and therefore we need to have all the protections that are needed,” he told Reuters.

The draft is the latest attempt to regulate a growing number of phone-based lenders ranging from large Kenyan firms like Safaricom, which partners with local lenders, to start-ups, several of which are backed by Silicon Valley investors.

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