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The Israeli Central Elections Committee Cannot Enforce Privacy Laws Against Political Parties

Publications / Feb 27, 2020

Article written by Adi Shoval

The Israeli Central Elections Committee (the “Committee”) lacks legal authority to enforce compliance with Israeli privacy laws on political parties running for the Knesset, the Israeli parliament – held the Chairman of the Committee, Israeli Supreme Court Justice Neal Hendel.

Justice Hendel delivered the decision on a motion seeking an injunction to enjoin the Likud party from using the Elector application. The petitioner alleged that such use breaches Israeli privacy laws, following a data breach in the application which compromised the full electoral register, leading to the unauthorized disclosure of the personal data of more than six million Israeli voters.

Justice Hendel explained that while protection of privacy is an extremely important matter, the Israeli Election Campaign Law from 1959 authorizes the Committee to issue injunctions only on the issues specifically enumerated in the law, which do not include compliance with privacy laws.

Justice Hendel also stated that the petition raises the need to amend the current legislation to better fit developing technology.

CLICK HERE to read the Central Elections Committee decision (in Hebrew).