PRIVACY INTERNATIONAL has sent a missive to the house of Lords and Digital MP Matt Hancock with some recommendations for improving the UK Data Protection Bill. And we wish the group well.
Like letters to Santa, or ex-girlfriends, it will probably be ignored, or looked over by MPs with bad internet on their minds and concerns about terrorist chat and not being able to grasp hold of personal data.
"Privacy International welcomes the aim of the Data Protection Bill, which is to introduce a data protection regime in the UK that is ‘fit for the digital age'. However, this aim risks being frustrated. Where the UK government could depart from the requirements imposed by European data protection standards, it has done so," wrote the organisation's Head of Privacy International Advocacy and Policy team Tomaso Falchetta.
"It has made little attempt to re-consider and restrict the conditions for collection and use of people's personal information, such as our political opinions, or to introduce adequate safeguards against decisions made by a system independent of human intervention, such as in credit rating."
This is a drum that PI bangs often, but perhaps it has not banged it loud enough yet. Something must change soon, and hopefully, this letter will be the catalyst. It includes a list of key concerns, and we share them and hope that the dusty House of Lords does too.
They include smart thinking including the non-use of automated judgement systems, and a better consideration towards its structure so that any mistakes or complaints and issues can get to the right people.
"We regret that the government is seeking broad exemptions to the data protection regime on national security grounds. While we are pleased that intelligence services are coming under the rules of data protection, the agencies are being given unfettered freedom to share people's personal information with other countries' governments, which is unacceptable," added Falchetta. µ
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