More and more private companies see the national registry number as a convenient piece of information to identify someone. Under the GDPR, the national registry number is not included as sensitive personal data but its processing remains prohibited by law.
By the law of 08/08/1983 regulating a national register of natural persons, it is determined under which conditions and by which persons the national register may be used.
It is the Sectoral Committee of the National Register that can grant authorization if 2 conditions are met;
- The applicant is a public or private institution of Belgian law;
- To perform tasks of public interest.
The main processors authorized to process the national register are;
- The police, government departments, notaries, bailiffs, lawyers and pharmacists as well as employers who need this data to provide it to the NSSO.
What is a national registry number?
The National Register of Natural Persons is the authentic source of the identification data of flesh-and-blood people and also a strong means for processing these data in an electronic way. This allows both the government and yourself to appeal. It is by working in this way that one avoids using different ways to gather information.
What use is my national registry number?
The National Registry makes it possible to locate you as a citizen in order to provide protection if necessary in the event of unforeseen circumstances such as a natural disaster, crime or fire.
The task of the National Register also consists of simplifying administrative formalities.
Unlawful consultation of the National Register!
Persons bound by professional secrecy can be held personally liable in disciplinary, civil and criminal matters. The DPO and professional secrecy.
Use of the national registry number without authorization or for purposes other than those for which such authorization was granted provides for severe penalties. There are also penalties for persons who, in the exercise of their functions and have the obligation of secrecy of the national register, intervene in the processing of information data and do not take all the obligation technical and organizational measures to ensure security and for persons authorized within an organization to access or communicate personal data in which they undertake to maintain the confidentiality of information data.
Where can I file a complaint?
If you find that any organization is unlawfully consulting “My File” or that this organization is not complying with its obligations, you have the right to file a complaint with the Commission for the Protection of Privacy or the courts.
Based on this law, the Commission will first deal with the complaint and try to act as a mediator between the parties to resolve the matter amicably and will do so free of charge.
If it determines that no agreement can be reached, it will report the incriminating facts to the prosecutor’s office or turn to a court. It is not the Commission that can impose a fine, but a court.
May a hotel copy my identification card?
It is prohibited by law to have a copy of your passport made by a hotel or other lodging rental facilities, and they are also allowed to even temporarily withhold the ID. To prove your identity, however, you can show the passport so they can note your name.
Owners of accommodations do have an obligation under the Criminal Code to keep nightly records should, for example, a disaster or fire occur.
May a rental agent make a copy of my passport?
The rental agent may do this because he mediates between you and the landlord of a property, for example, because the agent has a duty of care to the landlord who gave him the assignment, but you should erase your national registration number because otherwise there is a risk of identity fraud. Further, this broker must that the data it obtains is adequately protected.