The Knesset Committee on Monday will debate Yair Lapid’d Yesh Atid party’s violation of the law in using the state’s Holocaust survivors database for its election campaign, 360 reported. Knesset Committee Chairman MK Yoav Kish will hold the debate on securing state databases and regulating their use, having appealed urgently to Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein the need to settle the matter.
In early May, the Justice Ministry imposed tens of thousands of shekels in fines on Yesh Atid and on an NGO that deals with Holocaust survivors, ruling that both organizations had violated the privacy of survivors by sharing sensitive personal information without the subjects’ consent.
The Justice, Technology and Information Authority—part of the Justice Ministry—informed MK Lapid’s party and the Center Organizations of Holocaust Survivors in Israel—including its director Colette Avital—that they had violated the Protection of Privacy Law and had to pay fines totaling $15,400.
According to the Authority, Avital transferred to Yesh Atid Chairman Lapid’s headquarters, at his request, files that included records with sensitive and identifiable personal information about Holocaust survivors, without the explicit consent of the survivors in question and in violation of their privacy according to the Protection of Privacy Law.
Yesh Atid used the data for direct mail inquiries sent to the same Holocaust survivors prior to the March 2015 elections.
Yesh Atid issued a response, saying: “Yesh Atid has carved on its flag the upholding of the rule of the law and compliance with proper administration. This was a one-time mistake during the election campaign, made in good faith and without knowledge that the request was improper.”