Malaysian Punjabi Licensed Moneylenders Association (MPLMA) is working with the authorities to assist the money lending community’s preparation to deal with personal data protection.

The Personal Data Protection Commission has tasked the 66-year old organisation, powered by Punjabi moneylenders but open to all other communities, to lead a forum for sector to work out details to comply with the requirements of the Personal Data Protection Act 2010 (PDPA).

Among others, the commission has tasked MPLMA to develop a code of practice for the 3,000-odd money lenders operating in the country. As such, MPLMA has set up a PDPA committee led by Gobikrishna.

“This is an important building block in assisting moneylenders to comply with the PDPA,” Gobikrishna told Asia Samachar in a recent interview.

The appointment of MPLMA was a feather in the organisation’s cap.

“The appointment is certainly a recognition of sorts for us, and also trust upon our organisation. We are the most active association representing moneylenders. We have been working to inject professionalism into the community,” said MPLMA president Palwinder Singh.

The other members of the MPLMA PDPA committee are Amrinderjit Singh, Jeremy Khor Yee Teng, Kaveldeep Singh, Nesibjeet Singh, Ravinder Singh, Satnam Singh and Palwinder Singh.

The invitation came via a letter dated 16 October 2018 signed by deputy commissioner Rosmayuddin Baharuddin.

On its part, the Department of Personal Data Protection (PDP) has begun enforcing the PDPA since 2017 and has been doubling up checks and visits to companies to ensure they comply with the law.

In December 2015, the commission published the Personal Data Protection Standard 2015 after consulting members of the public. The standard sets out the minimum standards to process personal data and it is applicable to anyone who processes or has control or authorises the processing of any personal data relating to commercial transactions. Broadly, it sets out the security standards (electronic and non-electronic processing), retention standards and integrity standards.

On its part, MPLMA has started work on producing the code of practice that will assist moneylenders to comply with the PDPA requirements.

“We handle client data. We need it properly handle it in accordance with act,” said Gobikrishna.

Effective 16 Dec 2016, all registered money lenders are required to register themselves under the Act which regulates the processing of personal data in commercial transactions.

MPLMA has its work cut for it. Last year, it brought together some 600 licensed money lenders representatives for a briefing on the impact of PDPA on the sector. The half-day session also included officials from the Ministry of Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government and Ministry of Communications and Multimedia.

MPLMA, or Persatuan Pemberi Pinjam Wang Berlesen Punjabi Malaysia, was formerly known as Punjabi Sahukara Association. It was established in 1952.

By Asia Samachar

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