UK data watchdog to crack down on data misuse

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) plans to hire about 200 new investigators, lawyers, analysts and policy advisors by 2019, to help enforce a strict new regime. They will crack down on organisations that mishandle customers’ personal information.

The information commissioner needs more resources to deal with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

Elizabeth Denham, UK information commissioner at the ICO, said: “Almost every regulator would say that he or she doesn’t have sufficient resources. I have approximately 500 people that support me in my adjudicative and education functions across the United Kingdom.

“With the coming of the General Data Protection Regulation we will have more responsibilities, we will have new enforcement powers. So we are putting in new measures to be able to address our new regulatory powers.”

UK organisations need to comply with the GDPR by May 2018

An ICO spokesman, said: “In May 2018 new laws come into force to better protect people’s privacy in the digital age and ensure organisations who handle personal information get it right.”

That leaves UK organisations that process the personal data of EU residents just over ten months to make sure they are compliant. The GDPR will be enforced before the UK leaves the EU, and the government has confirmed that the Regulation will apply in the UK.

Organisations should not underestimate the length of time it will take to dismantle, recreate, adjust and amend their current data protection system.

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