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Ministry calls for report on transport safety agency data reveal

The ministry also wants the national communications regulator to determine whether Trafi's other consumer services can be safely restored on Wednesday.

Trafin pääkonttori Helsingissä.
Finnish Transport Safety Agency (Trafi) logo Image: Aliisa Piirla / Lehtikuva

The Ministry of Transport and Communications has asked the Finnish Communications Regulatory Authority Ficora, to assess data privacy and security on the web services of the Finnish Transport Safety Agency, Trafi.

The request follows a recent public backlash to Trafi's decision to open an online database where anyone could look up an individual's traffic and driving history.

The service, which originally launched in July, allows consumers to see if an individual has a valid driver's license or any other form of transport permit. However it also opens the door to access other personal data.

Trafi announced on Sunday that it had temporarily taken the search service offline while the agency looked into the matter. As of Tuesday morning the service had not yet been put back online.

On Sunday Trafi's Janne Huhtamäki defended the service as necessary for car dealerships and car rental companies wanting to check that vehicle users have valid driver's licenses.

Meanwhile the ministry wants Ficora to evaluate whether or not Trafi's online services were properly planned and whether or not it was possible to obtain other personal information about drivers from the data dump after the service was taken into use.

The ministry also called for Ficora to work closely with the Data Protection Ombudsman to address these questions. Ficora has until Wednesday to say whether or not Trafi's other electronic services -- excluding the driver information service -- can be legally and securely restored.

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