Turkey: Social Security Institution Will Have Access Your Private Data In Banks And Many Other Institutions Very Soon

Not only Ministries but also various governmental institutions, including the Public Procurement Authority, Turkish Patent Institute and Borsa İstanbul, will be obliged to share persons' data in their system with the Social Security Institution ("SSI"). SSI's authorization to reach private data goes even further––your bank will disclose your banking information to the SSI for some data periodically, and in other cases if the SSI requests it.

The Turkish Parliament has recently adopted the Communiqué on Insurance Check to Be Conducted by Banks and Public Administration and Information and Documents to Be Obtained from Agencies and Institutions ("Communiqué"). The Communiqué was published in the Official Gazette No. 29026 on 10 June 2014 and will enter into force on 1 August 2014. The Communiqué was drafted based upon the Regulation1 having the same title with the Communiqué's ("Regulation"), which was enacted and became effective at the end of 2013. SSI has, in fact, already been authorized to reach persons' data via various institutions, including banks, pursuant to Articles 8 and 100 of the Law No. 5510 on Social Securities and General Health Insurance2 ("Law No. 5510"). Yet, the Regulation defines the "extensive" scope of the SSI's such power and the Communiqué regulates the details. To put it more explicitly, the Communiqué answers the questions of which governmental authorities shall transfer when and what sorts of information and/or documents to the SSI.

SSI may request relevant information or documents only for the purposes of ensuring social securities of citizens, following up and collection of its receivables, and fulfilling its duties imposed thereon under the Law No. 5510––which is, indeed, a very broad scope of limitation. Accordingly, for disclosure of certain data, the SSI will execute protocols with the institutions whereby the institution in question will have to make the relevant information or documents available to the SSI. The institutions will not refrain from executing these protocols. For other sorts of data, the SSI will request them directly from the institution concerned. We highlight below some key aspects of the Communiqué.

Right to privacy vs. SSI's ability to reach private data: The right to privacy as a fundamental right has presumably never been such a hot topic as it is today in every developed and developing country, which is a result of incremental and incredible, and for some terrifying, advancements in technology, particularly with the internet. In line with this, the right to privacy is also heavily discussed with respect to governments' surveillance and access to private data. The Law No. 5510, as well as the Regulation and Communiqué, are clear about a potential conflict between the right to privacy and SSI's power to reach private data: the right to privacy has precedence over the SSI's nearly unlimited authority. Yet, the "delicate" protection of the law for the right to privacy brings other issues up to the discussion, such as how could one claim that his/her right to privacy was violated by the disclosing institution and/or the SSI if––in fact, as designated by the Communiqué––he/she would not have been informed of the disclosure previously or at any time afterwards. Furthermore, circumstances which may lead to serious consequences concerning the Government's security, the right to privacy in family life and the right to defense are also reserved vis-à-vis the SSI's empowerment by the law.

Which institutions will have to cooperate with the SSI? In addition to the Ministries and banks, the following institutions will have to disclose the requested data to the SSI: independent sport federations, bank funds, Press and Publication Association (Basın İlan Kurumu), Borsa İstanbul (Turkey's only stock exchange), Public Procurement Authority, Turkish Tradesmen and Artisans Confederation, Turkish Travel Agencies Association, Turkish Patent Institute and Higher Education Council (Yükseköğretim Kurulu).

What kinds of data will banks disclose to the SSI? Banks will inform the SSI on whether there is money in the account of the person concerned, should the SSI asks for such information. Moreover, the workplace and permanent address, as well as account information of those who failed to pay his/her debt timely to the SSI will be disclosed to the SSI. The SSI will further be entitled to levy electronically bank accounts of these persons and have the amount subject to the levy transferred to its own accounts. In addition, in cases of granting a loan which is not of a commercial nature or issuance of a credit card, if the bank obtained the relevant person's payroll, then it will have to share the payroll informaiton with the SSI.

Will the banks' secrecy obligation be affected? Similar to those applicable in many other countries, Turkey's banking legislation imposes on banks the duty to keep their customers' info confidential. There are also other secrecy burdens placed on certain governmental authorities, such as the tax privacy between taxpayers and tax authorities, including tax officers and tax courts, which obtain private data of taxpayers during performance of their duties. The Regulation recognizes exceptions to such obligations of banks and other institutions to maintain secrecy: in the provision of information and documents to the SSI, and restriction provisions under special laws are not taken into consideration. As a consequence, information requested from banks regarding natural persons or legal entities would not fall within the scope of the disclosure of the secret burdens under banking legislation. Also, those requested from the Ministry of Treasury or institutions connected thereto are exempted from the tax privacy. Thus, neither banks nor governmental institutions would violate their secrecy obligation while sharing private data they hold in their possession with the SSI. Neither could they refrain from disclosing the relevant information to the SSI on the grounds of technical impossibility or privacy and secrecy obligation or for any other reason whatsoever, save for the right to privacy and other reasons specified above.

Other types of information to be delivered to the SSI: The Communiqué elaborates which data will be disclosed by each institution specified therein, either periodically or upon the SSI's request. Some of the remarkable ones are as follows:

  • The General Directorate of Land Registry and Cadastre to make available to the SSI real estate's information of those who have debts to the SSI;
  • The Ministry of Customs and Trade to provide information and documents regarding commercial vehicles which have entered into, or left Turkey;
  • Trade Registries to provide, upon the SSI's request, information about legal entities and their shareholders if not available on the Central Trade Registry System (Merkezi Sicil Kayıt Sistemi, known as MERSIS);
  • Governorships, upon the SSI's request, to inform on as to whether the relevant person has travelled abroad or not;
  • The General Directorate of Security to inform with respect to the vehicles registered in the name of those who did not pay their debts timely to the SSI;
  • Borsa İstanbul to make available to the SSI info on shares registered with Central Securities Depository and owned by those who failed to pay their debts to the SSI in due course.

Sanction for failure to disclose the requested data: According to the Law No. 5510, in case the relevant institution, including public administrations and banks, fails to disclose the requested data to the SSI in the absence of a force majeure event, it would be subject to an administrative fine corresponding to five times of the monthly minimum wage. If the requested information or document is provided later than the time the SSI asked for, then the fine would be twice of the monthly minimum wage.3


1 Published in the Official Gazette No. 28843 on 6 December 2013.

2 Published in the Official Gazette No. 26200 on 16 June 2006.

3 Gross monthly minimum wage is TRY 1.134 from 1 July 2014 until the end of this year. Accordingly, the fine forfailing to fulfill the SSI's data request will correspond to a total amount of TRY 5,670 and if the requested data will be provided later, the fine will amount to TRY 2,268 when the Communiqué becomes effective on 1 August 2014.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on Mondaq.com.

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Some comments from our readers…
“The articles are extremely timely and highly applicable”
“I often find critical information not available elsewhere”
“As in-house counsel, Mondaq’s service is of great value”

Up-coming Events Search
Font Size:
Mondaq on Twitter
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).
Email Address
Company Name
Confirm Password
Mondaq Topics -- Select your Interests
 Law Performance
 Law Practice
 Media & IT
 Real Estate
 Wealth Mgt
Asia Pacific
European Union
Latin America
Middle East
United States
Worldwide Updates
Check to state you have read and
agree to our Terms and Conditions

Terms & Conditions and Privacy Statement

Mondaq.com (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd and as a user you are granted a non-exclusive, revocable license to access the Website under its terms and conditions of use. Your use of the Website constitutes your agreement to the following terms and conditions of use. Mondaq Ltd may terminate your use of the Website if you are in breach of these terms and conditions or if Mondaq Ltd decides to terminate your license of use for whatever reason.

Use of www.mondaq.com

You may use the Website but are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the content and articles available (the Content). You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these terms & conditions or with the prior written consent of Mondaq Ltd. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information about Mondaq.com’s content, users or contributors in order to offer them any services or products which compete directly or indirectly with Mondaq Ltd’s services and products.


Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the documents and related graphics published on this server for any purpose. All such documents and related graphics are provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers hereby disclaim all warranties and conditions with regard to this information, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. In no event shall Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use or performance of information available from this server.

The documents and related graphics published on this server could include technical inaccuracies or typographical errors. Changes are periodically added to the information herein. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers may make improvements and/or changes in the product(s) and/or the program(s) described herein at any time.


Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including what sort of information you are interested in, for three primary purposes:

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, newsletter alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our information providers who provide information free for your use.

Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) do not sell or provide your details to third parties other than information providers. The reason we provide our information providers with this information is so that they can measure the response their articles are receiving and provide you with information about their products and services.

If you do not want us to provide your name and email address you may opt out by clicking here .

If you do not wish to receive any future announcements of products and services offered by Mondaq by clicking here .

Information Collection and Use

We require site users to register with Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to view the free information on the site. We also collect information from our users at several different points on the websites: this is so that we can customise the sites according to individual usage, provide 'session-aware' functionality, and ensure that content is acquired and developed appropriately. This gives us an overall picture of our user profiles, which in turn shows to our Editorial Contributors the type of person they are reaching by posting articles on Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) – meaning more free content for registered users.

We are only able to provide the material on the Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) site free to site visitors because we can pass on information about the pages that users are viewing and the personal information users provide to us (e.g. email addresses) to reputable contributing firms such as law firms who author those pages. We do not sell or rent information to anyone else other than the authors of those pages, who may change from time to time. Should you wish us not to disclose your details to any of these parties, please tick the box above or tick the box marked "Opt out of Registration Information Disclosure" on the Your Profile page. We and our author organisations may only contact you via email or other means if you allow us to do so. Users can opt out of contact when they register on the site, or send an email to unsubscribe@mondaq.com with “no disclosure” in the subject heading

Mondaq News Alerts

In order to receive Mondaq News Alerts, users have to complete a separate registration form. This is a personalised service where users choose regions and topics of interest and we send it only to those users who have requested it. Users can stop receiving these Alerts by going to the Mondaq News Alerts page and deselecting all interest areas. In the same way users can amend their personal preferences to add or remove subject areas.


A cookie is a small text file written to a user’s hard drive that contains an identifying user number. The cookies do not contain any personal information about users. We use the cookie so users do not have to log in every time they use the service and the cookie will automatically expire if you do not visit the Mondaq website (or its affiliate sites) for 12 months. We also use the cookie to personalise a user's experience of the site (for example to show information specific to a user's region). As the Mondaq sites are fully personalised and cookies are essential to its core technology the site will function unpredictably with browsers that do not support cookies - or where cookies are disabled (in these circumstances we advise you to attempt to locate the information you require elsewhere on the web). However if you are concerned about the presence of a Mondaq cookie on your machine you can also choose to expire the cookie immediately (remove it) by selecting the 'Log Off' menu option as the last thing you do when you use the site.

Some of our business partners may use cookies on our site (for example, advertisers). However, we have no access to or control over these cookies and we are not aware of any at present that do so.

Log Files

We use IP addresses to analyse trends, administer the site, track movement, and gather broad demographic information for aggregate use. IP addresses are not linked to personally identifiable information.


This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that Mondaq (or its affiliate sites) are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of these third party sites. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this Web site.

Surveys & Contests

From time-to-time our site requests information from users via surveys or contests. Participation in these surveys or contests is completely voluntary and the user therefore has a choice whether or not to disclose any information requested. Information requested may include contact information (such as name and delivery address), and demographic information (such as postcode, age level). Contact information will be used to notify the winners and award prizes. Survey information will be used for purposes of monitoring or improving the functionality of the site.


If a user elects to use our referral service for informing a friend about our site, we ask them for the friend’s name and email address. Mondaq stores this information and may contact the friend to invite them to register with Mondaq, but they will not be contacted more than once. The friend may contact Mondaq to request the removal of this information from our database.


This website takes every reasonable precaution to protect our users’ information. When users submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected using firewalls and other security technology. If you have any questions about the security at our website, you can send an email to webmaster@mondaq.com.

Correcting/Updating Personal Information

If a user’s personally identifiable information changes (such as postcode), or if a user no longer desires our service, we will endeavour to provide a way to correct, update or remove that user’s personal data provided to us. This can usually be done at the “Your Profile” page or by sending an email to EditorialAdvisor@mondaq.com.

Notification of Changes

If we decide to change our Terms & Conditions or Privacy Policy, we will post those changes on our site so our users are always aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances, if any, we disclose it. If at any point we decide to use personally identifiable information in a manner different from that stated at the time it was collected, we will notify users by way of an email. Users will have a choice as to whether or not we use their information in this different manner. We will use information in accordance with the privacy policy under which the information was collected.

How to contact Mondaq

You can contact us with comments or queries at enquiries@mondaq.com.

If for some reason you believe Mondaq Ltd. has not adhered to these principles, please notify us by e-mail at problems@mondaq.com and we will use commercially reasonable efforts to determine and correct the problem promptly.