Turkey's Emerging Data Protection Landscape: East Meets West

Privacy is a fundamental human right protected by international instruments such as the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the European Convention on Human Rights. It is a prerequisite to a functioning democratic society and to many other fundamental freedoms, such as freedom of speech, religion, and political association. Informational privacy, or data protection in EU parlance, has gained an essential role in the regulation of a market in which personal data constitutes raw material and an emerging asset class.

Turkey, with a surging economy growing at an annual rate of 8 percent; the largest city in Europe (Istanbul, with an estimated population of 15 million); the fifth largest number of Facebook subscribers of all countries in the world; with 65,32 million people using mobile devices by the end of 2011 – is about to adopt a comprehensive data protection act. The new law will give effect to the recent constitutional amendment on data privacy and establish an independent data protection authority. Consequently, the demand for data protection professionals will increase, creating a unique business opportunity for countless technology lawyers, IT professionals and system engineers.

IAPP, with more than 10,000 members and dozens of KnowledgeNets across the globe, is enthusiastic to launch a new local chapter, helping to educate and train current and future Turkish professionals, provide certification and furnish opportunities to interact with professionals in the EU, US and the rest of the data protection world.