As UK data regulator, the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) is committed to increasing the trust the public has in government, public bodies and the private sector.
Specifically, trust in transparency, in the digital economy and in digital public service delivery. To this end, the ICO has published its Information Rights Strategic Plan 2017 – 2021.
It consists of a six-point plan that highlights the ICO’s commitment to “lead the implementation and effective oversight of the GDPR and other live data protection reforms; explore innovative and technologically agile ways of protecting privacy; strengthen transparency and accountability and promote good information governance; and protect the public in a digital world.”
Information Commissioner Elizabeth Denham said: “The General Data Protection Regulation, the centre piece of a package of EU data protection reforms, brings a 21st century approach to data protection legislation. It provides greater protections for the public and enhanced obligations for organisations.”
The six goals outlined are as follows.
Goal 1: Increase the public’s trust and confidence in how data is used and made available
This is in response to research that shows public trust in those who process personal and public information is low and calls for a culture of transparency and accountability amongst data processors.
Goal 2: Improve standards of information rights practice through clear, inspiring and targeted engagement and influence
The purpose here is two-fold. The ICO aims to encourage and inspire the highest possible standards in information practice among UK organisations, and to be a trusted adviser and supporter of law makers and those committed to compliance and higher standards of good practice.
Goal 3: Maintain and develop influence within the global information rights regulatory community
The ICO seeks to protect UK data as it flows across borders in our increasingly global environment. It wants to address the growing complexities, including as they relate to the UK’s preparations to leaving the European Union.
Goal 4: Stay relevant, provide excellent public service and keep abreast of evolving technology
Far from limiting or preventing innovation and advancements in technology and the continued growth and availability of data, the ICO wants to ensure that privacy enhancing techniques and tools are built in by design, so data protection good practice serves to support innovation.
Goal 5: Enforce the laws we help shape and oversee
The ICO plans to maintain proportionate and effective use of its enforcement powers to continue to deter those who risk non-compliance with the law. It commits to using the increased powers that the GDPR brings to target the most serious areas of non-compliance.
Goal 6: Be an effective and knowledgeable regulator for cyber related privacy issues
This mainly refers to ICO’s goal of being able to respond to GDPR, eIDAS and NIS breaches effectively. It involves co-ordinating with the UK national response process and making sure the ICO has the necessary powers and information sharing agreements – as well as having the capacity and capabilities to do respond effectively.
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