Elizabeth Denham the UK Information Commissioner confirmed on 31st October 2016 that the UK would be implementing the EU General Data Protection Regulations.
She reported that The Secretary of State Karen Bradley MP announced the decision at the Culture, Media & Sport Committee meeting on 24th October 2016, confirming the following: “We will be members of the EU in 2018 and therefore it would be expected and quite normal for us to opt into the GDPR and then look later at how best we might be able to help British business with data protection while maintaining high levels of protection for members of the public.”
Elizabeth Denham confirmed, “I see this as good news for the UK. One of the key drivers for data protection change is the importance and continuing evolution of the digital economy in the UK and around the world. That is why both the ICO and UK government have pushed for reform of the EU law for several years. The digital economy is primarily built upon the collection and exchange of data, including large amounts of personal data – much of it sensitive. Growth in the digital economy requires public confidence in the protection of this information.
Citizens want the benefits of these digital services but they want privacy rights and strong protections too. Having sound, well-formulated and properly enforced data protection safeguards help mitigate risks and inspire public trust and confidence in how their information is handled by business, third sector organisations, the state and public service.
The major shift with the implementation of the GDPR will be in giving people greater control over their data. This has to be a good thing. Today’s consumers understand that they need to share some of their personal data with organisations to get the best service. But they’re right to expect organisations to then keep that information safe, be transparent about its use and for organisations to demonstrate their accountability for their compliance”.
As Amicus ITS reported in our blog on 14th October 2016, the Information Commissioner’s Office is committed to helping UK businesses and public bodies to prepare to the meet the requirements for GPDR ahead of May 2018 and beyond. It’s 12 point plan for business is published and all organisations are urged to review it against their current data protection measures.
Elizabeth Denham added: “I acknowledge that there may still be questions about how the GDPR would work on the UK leaving the EU but this should not distract from the important task of compliance with GDPR by 2018. We’ll be working with government to stay at the centre of these conversations about the long term future of UK data protection law and to provide our advice and counsel where appropriate”.
The ICO advise they will be publishing guidance on different areas over the next six months. Amicus ITS will ensure that we share these with you as they arise so you can best prepare your organisation for the tighter regulations, responsibilities and accountability.