Data Protection Act, 1988
Power to require information.
12.—(1) The Commissioner may, by notice in writing (referred to in this Act as an information notice) served on a person, require the person to furnish to him in writing within such time as may be specified in the notice such information in relation to matters specified in the notice as is necessary or expedient for the performance by the Commissioner of his functions.
(2) Subject to subsection (3) of this section—
(a) an information notice shall state that the person concerned may appeal to the Court under section 26 of this Act against the requirement specified in the notice within 21 days from the service of the notice on him, and
(b) the time specified in the notice for compliance with a requirement specified therein shall not be expressed to expire before the end of the period of 21 days specified in paragraph (a) of this subsection and, if an appeal is brought against the requirement, the requirement need not be complied with and subsection (5) of this section shall not apply in relation thereto, pending the determination or withdrawal of the appeal.
(3) If the Commissioner—
(a) by reason of special circumstances, is of opinion that a requirement specified in an information notice should be complied with urgently, and
(b) includes a statement to that effect in the notice,
subsection (2) of this section shall not apply in relation to the notice, but the notice shall contain a statement of the effect of the provisions of section 26 (other than subsection (3)) of this Act and shall not require compliance with the requirement before the end of the period of 7 days beginning on the date on which the notice is served.
(4) (a) No enactment or rule of law prohibiting or restricting the disclosure of information shall preclude a person from furnishing to the Commissioner any information that is necessary or expedient for the performance by the Commissioner of his functions.
(b) Paragraph (a) of this subsection does not apply to information that in the opinion of the Minister or the Minister for Defence is, or at any time was, kept for the purpose of safeguarding the security of the State or information that is privileged from disclosure in proceedings in any court.
(5) A person who, without reasonable excuse, fails or refuses to comply with a requirement specified in an information notice or who in purported compliance with such a requirement furnishes information to the Commissioner that the person knows to be false or misleading in a material respect shall be guilty of an offence.