Privacy and Data Protection

On 14 July 2022, the UK Information Commissioner’s Office (“ICO”) has launched a public consultation on its draft strategic three year plan, titled “ICO25”. The plan sets out a commitment to safeguard the information rights of the most vulnerable individuals with the aim of empowering people to confidently share their information to use today’s market products and services, with work particularly targeting:

  • children’s privacy;
  • AI-driven discrimination;
  • the use of algorithms within the benefits system; and
  • the impact of predatory marketing calls.


Continue Reading ICO25: ICO sets out its three year strategic plan

On 7 February 2022, the UK Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) announced that it had launched a consultation on Chapter 3 of its draft guidance on anonymisation, pseudonymisation, and privacy enhancing technologies (PET).
Continue Reading ICO launches consultation on Chapter 3 of updated guidance on anonymisation, pseudonymisation and PET

Avid readers of this blog (and we trust there are many of you!) will recall that the UK government recently published a white paper. The white paper sets out the UK government’s approach to regulating the internet to tackle online harms. The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has just published the Information Commissioner’s (Commissioner) full

Britain’s data protection and broadcasting regulators, the Information Commissioner’s Office and Ofcom, have published a joint Report looking into internet users’ concerns about online harms. The British government’s recently published White Paper, which outlined its approach for regulating the internet to tackle online harms, was informed by this Report.

Methodology

Over 3,000 interviews were

The UK government recently published its response (Government Response) to a House of Lords committee report (Committee Report) discussing prospective regulation of digital services facilitated by the internet.

The Government Response largely accepts the key recommendations of the Committee Report, and finds the Committee Report is closely aligned with the government’s

The UK Government has published a White Paper outlining its approach towards regulating the internet to tackle online harms.

The White Paper cites a study carried out by the UK’s communications regulator (Ofcom) and data protection regulator (Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO)). The study found that nearly one in four British adults suffered harm from either online content or their interactions online. Regulatory and voluntary initiatives currently dealing with online harms were identified by the UK Government as not going far enough or being inconsistently enforced.

Online harm

The White Paper broadly identified what would be considered an online harm. These include activities and content involving:

  • child sexual exploitation and abuse (CSEA)
  • terrorism
  • harassment
  • disinformation
  • encouragement of self-harm and/or suicide
  • online abuse of public figures
  • interference with legal proceedings
  • cyber-bullying
  • children accessing inappropriate content


Continue Reading Sense or censorship? UK government publishes White Paper on tackling online harms

The Council of Europe (CoE) recently issued its recommendation to member states on the protection of health-related data (Recommendation). The Recommendation guides member states to ensure that their law and practice reflect the principles of processing health-related data.

The recommendations stem from Convention 108 which was the first international treaty in the field of data protection. Like the General Data Protection Regulation 2016/679 (GDPR), Convention 108 sets out principles for processing health data, but contains fewer options than GDPR. The Recommendation’s principles related to health data align with GDPR, but in some cases provide more guidance about processing health-related data.

Some of the key recommendations on processing certain health-related data are below.

Continue Reading Council of Europe issues recommendation on processing health-related data

The Select Committee on Communications of the House of Lords (Committee) published a report discussing UK regulation of ‘digital services facilitated by the internet’.

We summarise some of the key recommendations of the report, which was published on 9 March 2019:

1. A central regulatory body called the Digital Authority should be set up to co-ordinate internet regulation.

2. All future internet regulation should be informed by 10 common principles:

  • Parity: ensuring online and offline regulation offer equivalent protection for individuals.
  • Accountability: digital actors are to be held to account.
  • Transparency: powerful digital actors should be open to scrutiny.
  • Openness: facilitate innovation and choice for users.
  • Privacy: ensure that regulation closes the gap between policy and user expectations about data protection and data privacy.
  • Ethical design: ethical standards should be incorporated into the design of technology and delivered by default.
  • Recognition of childhood: protect children and ensure accessibility.
  • Respect for human rights and equality: safeguard freedom of expression.
  • Education and awareness-raising: promote digital literacy.
  • Democratic accountability, proportionality and evidence-based approach: ensure that regulation is evidence based and prevents harm while balancing against the right to freedom of expression.


Continue Reading Regulating digital services – UK parliament weighs in

This month, the Indianapolis Colts, app developer Yinzcam, Inc., and ultrasonic technology provider Lisnr, Inc., were hit with a federal class action lawsuit in Pennsylvania for violating the Electronic Communications Privacy Act by allegedly allowing the Colts fan app to listen in on users’ personal phone conversations, and use that information for advertising purposes without