On 11 October 2019, Japan started the process of discussing new legislation to be bought in to tighten controls on domestic and global giants in information technology, and protecting the privacy of consumers with concern that certain businesses misuse their market share to secure growth.

Over the years with the boom of technology and social media, global technology firms such as Google LLC, Apple Inc., Facebook Inc., and Amazon.com Inc., are accused of abusing their massive market share in order to prevent fair competition and abuse of personal data.

The U.S and European authorities have already worked towards improving controls on such businesses, but it remains a challenge how to maintain the independence of business activities that are essential to technological innovation.

In order to address the issue, the government plans to submit legislation to the National Diet, Japan’s legislature, to increase the transparency to business transactions by publishing terms and conditions. The Government is also preparing to table a bill to amend the Privacy Act next year so that people will have the right to request that companies stop accessing their personal data.

In order to enhance the security of privacy, the Government will consider the increasing oversight of foreign companies in the new legislation by enhancing the functions of the Personal Information Protection Commission, a government responsible for monitoring the handling of private date.

Furthermore, it will also seek to stop illegal and improper collection of personal information by businesses under new guidelines that will extend anti-monopoly laws to business-to-customer transactions. It is expected that the Government will make policy recommendations to draft new legislation by the end of the year and then present the bills during the ordinary Diet session to be held in January.

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