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In an increasingly digital age, the protection of children’s personal data has never been more critical. Recognising this, the Personal Data Protection Commission (PDPC) of Singapore issued Advisory Guidelines on 28 March 2024, focusing on the Personal Data Protection Act 2012 (PDPA) as it relates to children in the digital world. These guidelines provide vital insights into the appropriate handling, consent, and protection measures necessary to safeguard our youngest digital citizens.


Understanding the Advisory Guidelines

The PDPC’s guidelines are designed to help organisations understand how to responsibly handle the personal data of children—defined as individuals 18 years of age and younger—especially in services and products they are likely to use. This includes, but is not limited to, social media platforms, e-learning tools, and digital games.

Key Highlights of the PDPA Guidelines for Children’s Data:

  1. Communication Clarity: Organisations are urged to use simple, age-appropriate language when explaining data processing activities to children. Infographics and videos could be particularly effective in enhancing understanding.
  2. Consent Necessities: Valid consent for processing data can be obtained directly from children between the ages of 13 and 17, provided the implications of such consent are made clear to them. For children under this age bracket, parental or guardian consent is required, reflecting a cautious approach towards a minor’s capacity to understand the repercussions of data decisions.
  3. Purpose and Proportionality: Data collection must not only serve legitimate purposes but should also be proportional to the needs. This includes age verification to ensure access to appropriate content and safeguarding against harmful material. Organisations must adopt data minimisation strategies to prevent unnecessary or excessive data collection.
  1. Enhanced Data Protection: Given the sensitivity of children’s data, it should be treated with a higher level of security. The guidelines recommend that organisations follow the PDPC’s basic and enhanced data protection practices for ICT systems.
  2. Breach Notification: In the event of a data breach likely to cause significant harm, not only must organisations notify the PDPC, but they should also inform the affected child and their parents or guardians to allow for timely remedial actions.
  3. Data Protection Impact Assessments (DPIAs): Organisations are encouraged to conduct DPIAs before launching services likely to be accessed by children. This proactive measure helps identify and mitigate risks associated with data processing activities.


Impact on Businesses

The guidelines extend to any entity whose products or services might be accessed by children, intentionally or otherwise. This broad scope means that a wide array of businesses, from educational tech companies to entertainment and social media platforms, must evaluate their practices to ensure they align with these advisory standards.

The implications for non-compliance are significant, encompassing not just potential penalties under the PDPA but also reputational damage. Organisations must therefore be diligent in implementing these guidelines to avoid legal pitfalls and build trust with consumers—parents, educators, and the young users themselves.


How Formiti Data International Can Assist

At Formiti Data International, we understand the complexities involved in navigating the landscape of data protection, especially when it involves vulnerable demographics such as children. Our bespoke services are tailored to help businesses adhere to Singapore’s PDPA guidelines as well as other international data protection regulations.

Our team of experts provides comprehensive support in the form of compliance audits, policy design, and implementation strategies that are specifically adapted to meet the requirements laid out in the PDPA for children’s data. With our guidance, organisations can ensure that their data handling practices are not only compliant but also demonstrate a commitment to safeguarding children’s privacy and security in the digital domain.



The new PDPA guidelines for children’s data in Singapore mark a significant step towards enhancing the protection of minors in the digital environment. As businesses adapt to these changes, the support of seasoned data privacy consultants like Formiti Data International becomes invaluable. Ensuring compliance with these guidelines not only helps protect the vulnerable but also strengthens the integrity and trustworthiness of your organisation. Contact Formiti Data International today to learn how we can help your business achieve and maintain compliance with these essential data protection standards.