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What have the ICO's 'competitors' been up to?

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PWC publish information about regulatory action from around the world, from the UK’s own Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) to Australia’s Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC).

PWC’s Privacy and Security Enforcement Tracker monitors privacy issues and enforcement actions in a total of 34 countries – 17 in Europe and 17 in the rest of the world.

The tracker is great for keeping up to date with global trends, especially in a time where data protection law is increasingly converging and companies look to create global standards.

Many countries around the world are creating data protection laws for the first time, often in the image of the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

GDPR, of course, applies to any organisation that processes personal data about an individual residing within the EU. GDPR has helped push data protection on to the risk register of corporate boards across the globe.

Understanding what other countries are doing is extremely important if your business operates across borders.

Organisations are grappling with big decisions in this time of change, catalysed by GDPR. Businesses are using this time as a watershed moment to transform their approach to privacy: many are now seeing how they can make privacy a brand asset.

Regulators are on a journey too with the ICO sticking to its pragmatic approach to enforcement.

In his foreword to PWC’s tracker, James Dipple-Johnstone, Deputy Commissioner (Operations) at the ICO, emphasises that while the new law strengthens the ICO’s fining powers – from a maximum of £500,000 to £17 million or 4% of global turnover – “our approach to enforcement action will not change. We remain committed to the carrot over the stick. Guiding, advising and supporting organisations to help them comply with the law will always be our preference.”

You can download the full report here.

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