NEWS9 July 2010

UK Ministry of Justice opens data protection consultation

Government UK

UK— The Ministry of Justice is inviting people and companies to have their say on current data protection law in the UK, as part of a continuing review of the European Union’s data protection directive.

The call for evidence, which is open until 6 October, is designed to furnish the government with “a solid evidence base to use in negotiations with other European Union parties”, said justice minister Lord McNally (pictured).

European Commissioner Viviane Reding aims to produce a legislative proposal reforming the EU data protection directive by the end of the year, which will have a knock-on effect on all EU member states and their own national laws.

The Ministry of Justice is inviting submissions on issues such as the rights of data subjects; the obligations of data controllers; powers afforded to the data watchdog, the Information Commissioner; and international transfers of data.

At a European level, research industry associations Efamro and Esomar have already contributed to a consultation on the legal framework for the fundamental right to protection of personal data.

Writing for Research, Efamro president Stig Holmer said that submission was just “the first step on the journey” towards revised data protection rules.

The Ministry of Justice consultation document is available here.