The Information Commissioner’s recently published Annual Report for 2017/18 reveals a substantial – 29% - increase in the number of self- reported data breaches. In light of the fact that the GDPR introduced new mandatory reporting of serious breaches, it is to be anticipated that the 2018/19 Annual Report will show an even greater increase.
In two recent decisions the CJEU has adopted a maximalist, and probably to many people a counter-intuitive, approach to the issue of the identification of joint data controllers – the effect the decisions is that a body can be a joint data controller of personal data even through it has no access to, and no right of access to, the personal data in question. Both cases were decided under pre-GDPR law, but changes introduced by the GDPR mean that they are likely to have a significant impact.
Mixed data cases present a particular challenge for data controllers and, as Adam Chapman noted in his previous commentary of this case in the High Court, “in ‘three way’ cases such as these, the data controller is likely to be challenged irrespective of the decision they take”.
The GDPR has introduced a new accountability principle: the data controller “shall be responsible for, and be able to demonstrate compliance, with” each of the six principles of the GDPR. For a principle summarised in 10 words, there is a significant amount of work required by organisations to ensure accountability. And there may be significant consequences if this work is not undertaken.
The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has begun consulting on a new Regulatory Action Policy (“the Policy”). This new policy is intended to provide “direction and focus” for those the ICO regulates, the public and its staff - and therefore demands careful consideration by anyone concerned about regulatory action within this new GDPR era. Critically, the Policy reiterates the ICO’s commitment to a balanced approach to regulation by creating an environment in which data subjects are protected whilst business is able to operate and innovate efficiently: