Employers’ activities involve the need to collect personal data on their employees. Protection of privacy entails job applicants’, employees’ and civil servants’ greatest possible right to know and decide about the processing and content of their own personal data and the right to be assessed on the basis of correct personal data. Therefore it is important for everyone to know how matters relating to the processing of personal data are resolved at workplaces.
Provisions on the processing of personal data in employment and civil service relationships are laid down in the Act on Data Protection in Working Life. The Personal Data Act and the Act on Privacy in Electronic Communications contain general provisions related to data protection that, in addition to this special Act, also apply to working life. The Act on Data protection in Working Life lays down provisions on issues including the general requirements for processing personal data, the requirements for the performance of tests and examinations, drug testing, camera surveillance and the protection of e-mail. Compliance with the Act is supervised by the Occupational Safety and Health Authorities and the Office of the Data Protection Ombudsman.
The Act on Checking the Criminal Background of Persons Working with Children issues provisions on the procedure for obtaining the criminal record of those appointed to work with minors. The purpose is to reduce children’s risk of being subjected to sexual abuse or violence or being tempted into using narcotic substances. The procedure for checking the criminal background only applies in cases where the work performed involves personal contact with a minor.