His Highness Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani issued Law No 13 of 2016 on protecting personal data on Thursday, that will be effective starting from its date of publication in the official gazette.

The law puts forth the provisions related to the rights of individuals to protect the privacy of their personal data. The Cabinet, in this connection, had also taken the necessary measures to issue the draft law on protecting personal data following a review of the Advisory Council’s recommendations on the matter, reports Gulf Times.

As per the law, it would be deemed illegal for companies to use an individual’s data without his/her consent. The law also calls for provisions to prevent unsolicited spam marketing by SMS or email.

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It may be noted that the law also outlines obligations for organisations and companies to ensure that they properly protect personal information from being leaked or hacked. It also includes articles that require consent from individuals before their personal information can be used by an organisation.

The Emir also ratified Cabinet Decision No 30 of 2016, amending the regulations of a number of administrative units of Qatar Electricity and Water Corporation (Kahramaa) and reassigning their specialties, which will be effective from its date of publication in the official gazette. He also issued yesterday Emiri Decree No 45 of 2016 ratifying a memorandum of understanding (MoU) in the legal field between the governments of Qatar and Singapore. The MoU was signed in Doha on March 6, 2016 and it will have the power of the law in accordance with Article 68 of the constitution