Is a fine of up to 2% of annual worldwide turnover too big? Is it possible to report data breaches within 24 hours?
The Ministry of Justice has opened a call for evidence on the European Commission’s draft General Data Protection Regulation. The information obtained from the four-week long evidence gathering exercise will be used to help inform the Government’s negotiating position on the Regulation.
The call for evidence itself is wide-ranging and comments are requested on:
- the potential consequences of the Regulation on the processing of personal data;
- the likely benefits to individuals and the effect on their data protection rights;
- the extent to which the proposal builds “trust in the online environment”; and
- the impact of the proposal on economic growth.
Stressing the need for responses to include “quantifiable costs and benefits” and “real life examples”, the Ministry of Justice appears receptive and keen to hear views on the proposed Regulation.
To make the most of this opportunity, we suggest that you review the draft Regulation in the context of your industry and think about how the rights and obligations it creates will apply to your business. For example, how will an individual’s ‘right the be forgotten’ sit with the way that your sector uses personal data? Will the changes regarding the use of data processors affect the way that you operate? We can of course help you decode the Regulation and consider how it may apply – we also recognise from our own experience working on the Regulation that the challenge for business will be in framing a response which clearly sets out its impact.
Although time is short (there is a four week window) in which to delve through the Regulation and draft an effective response to the call for evidence, the willingness on the part of the Ministry of Justice to engage with stakeholders suggests that it will be worth it. Given the scale of the proposed changes and on the premise that if ‘you don’t ask, you don’t get’, the call for evidence offers interested parties a valuable opportunity to engage with, and help shape the future of data protection both in Europe and, if the current draft Regulation is anything to go by, worldwide!
The call for evidence closes on either 4 March 2012 (according to the Call for Evidence paper itself) or 6 March 2012 (the date provided on the Justice website). Further information, including the call for evidence questionnaire can be found at http://www.justice.gov.uk/consultations/data-protection-proposals-cfe.htm.