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Cyprus

Data chief to look into how election candidates got hold of people’s phone numbers

The office of the Commissioner for the Protection of Personal Data announced on Wednesday that it will investigate reports concerning the unauthorised disclosure of telephone numbers of members of the public to municipal election candidates.

According to an announcement of the commissioner, Irene Loizidou-Nicolaidou, the probe was initiated following seven reports of unwanted messages and phone calls from 17 candidates. The office has also received several phone calls from members of the public who complained they had received messages and calls from candidates but who did not file official complaints.

The commissioner said that the probe, will focus on the way phone numbers of members of the public are being stored as well as on the procedures for the protection of data from unauthorised disclosure.

“Despite the small number of complaints filed, I know that the number of messages sent in violation of the law is much bigger,” the commissioner said, justifying her decision to proceed with the probe.

The candidates in question had been promptly informed as to the legislation, the announcement said, they were asked to comply and were warned that should more complaints were filed against them, they risked the imposition of administrative sanctions. Following the written warning, it said, there were no more complaints against those candidates.

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