Please provide an overview of the legal and regulatory framework governing data protection and privacy in your jurisdiction (e.g., a summary of the key laws, who is covered by them, what sectors, activities or data do they regulate, and who enforces the relevant laws). Are there any expected changes in the data protection and privacy law landscape in 2022-2023 (e.g., new laws or regulations coming into effect, enforcement of any new laws or regulations, expected regulations or amendments)?
Are there any registration or licensing requirements for entities covered by these laws and, if so, what are the requirements? Are there any exemptions?
How do these laws define personal data or personally identifiable information (PII) versus special category or sensitive PII? What other key definitions are set forth in the laws in your jurisdiction?
What are the principles related to, the general processing of personal data or PII – for example, must a covered entity establish a legal basis for processing personal data or PII in your jurisdiction or must personal data or PII only be kept for a certain period? Please outline any such principles or “fair information practice principles” in detail.
Are there any circumstances where consent is required or typically used in connection with the general processing of personal data or PII?
What are the rules relating to the form, content and administration of such consent? For instance, can consent be implied, incorporated into a broader document (such as a terms of service) or bundled with other matters (such as consents for multiple processing operations)?
What special requirements, if any, are required for processing sensitive PII? Are there any categories of personal data or PII that are prohibited from collection?
How do the laws in your jurisdiction address children’s personal data or PII?
Does the law include any derogations, exclusions or limitations other than those already described? Please describe the relevant provisions.
Does your jurisdiction impose requirements of 'data protection by design' or 'data protection by default' or similar? If so, please describe the requirement and how businesses typically meet the requirement.
Are owners or processors of personal data or PII required to maintain any internal records of their data processing activities or to establish internal processes or written documentation? If so, please describe how businesses typically meet these requirements.
Do the laws in your jurisdiction require or recommend having defined data retention and data disposal policies and procedures? If so, please describe these data retention and disposal requirements.
When are you required to, or when is it recommended that you, consult with data privacy regulators in your jurisdiction?
Do the laws in your jurisdiction require or recommend conducting risk assessments regarding data processing activities and, if so, in what circumstances? How are these risk assessments typically carried out?
Do the laws in your jurisdiction require appointment of a data protection officer (or other person to be in charge of privacy or data protection at the organization) and what are their legal responsibilities?
Do the laws in your jurisdiction require or recommend employee training? If so, please describe these training requirements.
Do the laws in your jurisdiction require businesses to providing notice to individuals of their processing activities? If so, please describe these notice requirements (e.g., posting an online privacy notice).
Do the laws in your jurisdiction draw any distinction between the owners/controllers and the processors of personal data and, if so, what are they? (e.g., are obligations placed on processors by operation of law, or do they typically only apply through flow-down contractual requirements from the owners/controller?)
Do the laws in your jurisdiction require minimum contract terms with processors of personal data or PII or are there any other restrictions relating to the appointment of processors (e.g., due diligence or privacy and security assessments)?
Please describe any restrictions on monitoring, automated decision-making or profiling in your jurisdiction including the use of tracking technologies such as cookies. How are these terms defined and what restrictions are imposed, if any?
Please describe any restrictions on cross-contextual behavioral advertising. How is this term or related terms defined?
Please describe any laws in your jurisdiction addressing the sale of personal information. How is “sale” or related terms defined and what restrictions are imposed, if any?
Please describe any laws in your jurisdiction addressing telephone calls, text messaging, email communication or direct marketing. How are these terms defined and what restrictions are imposed, if any?
Please describe any laws in your jurisdiction addressing biometrics, such as facial recognition. How are these terms defined and what restrictions are imposed, if any?
Is the transfer of personal data or PII outside the jurisdiction restricted? If so, please describe these restrictions and how businesses typically comply with them (e.g., does a cross-border transfer of personal data require a specified mechanism? Does a cross-border transfer of personal data or PII require notification to or authorization from a regulator?)
What security obligations are imposed on personal data or PII owners/controllers and on processors, if any, in your jurisdiction?
Do the laws in your jurisdiction address security breaches and, if so, how does the law define “security breach”?
Does your jurisdiction impose specific security requirements on certain sectors, industries or technologies (e.g., telecoms, infrastructure, artificial intelligence)?
Under what circumstances must a business report security breaches to regulators, to individuals, or to other persons or entities? If breach notification is not required by law, is it recommended by the regulator and what is the typical custom or practice in your jurisdiction?
Does your jurisdiction have any specific legal requirement or guidance regarding dealing with cyber-crime, such as the payment of ransoms in ransomware attacks?
Does your jurisdiction have a separate cybersecurity regulator? If so, please provide details.
Do the laws in your jurisdiction provide individual data privacy rights, such as the right to access and the right to deletion? If so, please provide a general description of the rights, how they are exercised, what exceptions exist and any other relevant details.
Are individual data privacy rights exercisable through the judicial system or enforced by a regulator or both?
Does the law in your jurisdiction provide for a private right of action and, if so, in what circumstances?
Are individuals entitled to monetary damages or compensation if they are affected by breaches of data privacy laws? Is actual damage required or is injury of feelings sufficient?
How are the laws governing privacy and data protection enforced?
What is the range of sanctions (including fines and penalties) for violation of these laws?
Are there any guidelines or rules published regarding the calculation of fines or thresholds for the imposition of sanctions?
Can personal data or PII owners/controllers appeal to the courts against orders of the regulators?
Are there any proposals for reforming data protection or cybersecurity laws currently under review? Please provide an overview of any proposed changes and how far such proposals are through the legislative process.
Switzerland: Data Protection & Cyber Security
This country-specific Q&A provides an overview of Data Protection & Cyber Security laws and regulations applicable in Switzerland.