On 7 May 2024, Singapore’s Parliament introduced an Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority of Singapore (ACRA) Registry and Regulatory Enhancements Bill (Bill), which will limit public disclosures of company directors’ residential addresses on the business registry in Singapore.

Currently, the business profile of a company or partnership that is set up in Singapore can be retrieved for a fee from the registry, which is administered by ACRA. The profile captures certain personal particulars of the entity’s directors and individual shareholders or partners; namely, their full name and address, identification number, nationality/citizenship and their date of appointment. An appointed person’s address has included, or been considered to mean, their residential address.

However, the Bill seeks to clarify that for future records filed with or maintained by ACRA, residential addresses must be excluded from public disclosure if an individual’s contact address is available. Such contact address may be an address at which the individual can be reached, but in which he or she does not reside or live, for instance, an office.

This is subject to certain exceptions, for instance:

  • If the individual needs to be reached for legitimate reasons and communications sent to their contact address that require a response within a specific period are unanswered
  • There is some other evidence to show that service of any document at that contact address is not effective in bringing it to the individual’s attention

Regardless of these exclusions (which serve legitimate law enforcement and identity verification purposes anyway), this move follows a well-considered and thorough consultation process that gained traction from as early as January 2022 and will culminate in the passing of an amendment to Singapore’s corporate registry framework with data protection and privacy in mind.

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