General Data Protection Regulation came into force in the year 2018
To allow information to flow more freely and drive growth in the digital economy, Britain is planning to reform data protection law and now it has left the European Union’s (EU) orbit, said Oliver Dowden, Digital Secretary. The EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) was mirrored in British law following Brexit.
The General Data Protection Regulation came into force in the year 2018. The EU has provisionally recognised British law as adequate.
Britain would look for opportunities to drive growth and not water down data protection, said Dowden.
He told reporters, “There is a sweet spot for the UK whereby we hold onto many of the strengths of General Data Protection Regulation in terms of giving people security about their data”. “But there are obviously areas where I think we can make more progress”.
In striking data-sharing deals with non-EU countries, Britain could move faster than the EU, he said.
He said, “In our rule making, we can take a slightly less European approach as set out in General Data Protection Regulation by focusing more on the outcomes that we want to have and less on the burdens of the rules imposed on individual businesses”.
Britain could diverge from Europe while keeping adequacy with the bloc, its biggest trading partner; he said and added that it was not a binary choice between driving growth and sacrificing adequacy or having adequacy and little growth.
Dowden said he would not “move precipitately” and would draft proposals after consultation with industry.
To drive the economic recovery from COVID-19, the data proposals will be part of an agenda to use technology.
He said the rollout of gigabit broadband would accelerate growth, and he was confident the 80 per cent of the country that did not require subsidy would be connected by 2025.
To help fund broadband in rural areas, the government had initially allocated 1.2 billion pounds of a total 5 billion; he said adding that more money could be allocated.
“The constraint is not the allocation of the capital, it’s the capacity of the (telecoms) companies to deliver on that capital”, he said.