ICO hosts international conference on future of access to official information

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ICO hosts international conference on future of access to official information

‘Trust, transparency and progressive information rights’ is the theme of a global conference jointly hosted by the ICO and the Office of the Scottish Information Commissioner today.

The 2017 International Conference of Information Commissioners (ICIC) is taking place in the UK for the first time since 2006. Freedom of information regulators, experts, campaigners, academics, journalists and exponents from around the world will consider a range of issues, opportunities and challenges affecting information rights and public transparency.

Subjects being discussed include:

  • Innovations in access to information
  • The future of transparency
  • Global models: how well do they work?
  • Journalists, access to information and open data
  • What are progressive information rights and how do we achieve them?

The ICIC Manchester 2017

Developing and maintaining global influence in the spheres of freedom of information and data protection is a key goal in both the ICO’s International Strategy

Information Commissioner Elizabeth Denham said:

“We have to be vigilant and creative to address the challenges of the digital age. The public has a right of access and we need to preserve it.”

Acting Scottish Information Commissioner Margaret Keyse said:

“The landscape in which we work is always changing – whether that change comes from the law, from governments, from technology or from public expectations.”

Cabinet Office Minister Chris Skidmore said:

“The UK is a world leader in open government. We are passionate in our belief that if you make things open, it makes them better.”

Scotland’s Minister for Parliamentary Business Joe FitzPatrick said:

“Central to our vision is empowering people, helping people to have a bigger say in the decisions that affect them most, and access to information is key to any meaningful engagement.”

Notes to Editors

  1. The Information Commissioner’s Office upholds information rights in the public interest, promoting openness by public bodies and data privacy for individuals.
  1. The ICO has specific responsibilities set out in the Data Protection Act 1998, the Freedom of Information Act 2000, Environmental Information Regulations 2004 and Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations 2003.
  1. The ICO can take action to change the behaviour of organisations and individuals that collect, use and keep personal information. This includes criminal prosecution, non-criminal enforcement and audit. The ICO has the power to impose a monetary penalty on a data controller of up to £500,000.
  1. The European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a new law which will apply in the UK from 25 May 2018. The Government has confirmed the UK’s decision to leave the EU will not affect the commencement of the GDPR. The Government is introducing measures related to this and wider data protection reforms in a Data Protection Bill.
  1. Anyone who processes personal information must comply with eight principles of the Data Protection Act, which make sure that personal information is:
  • fairly and lawfully processed;
  • processed for limited purposes;
  • adequate, relevant and not excessive;
  • accurate and up to date;
  • not kept for longer than is necessary;
  • processed in line with your rights;
  • secure; and
  • not transferred to other countries without adequate protection.
  1. Civil Monetary Penalties (CMPs) are subject to a right of appeal to the (First-tier Tribunal) General Regulatory Chamber against the imposition of the monetary penalty and/or the amount of the penalty specified in the monetary penalty notice.
  1. Any monetary penalty is paid into the Treasury’s Consolidated Fund and is not kept by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO).
  1. To report a concern to the ICO telephone our helpline 0303 123 1113 or go to ico.org.uk/concerns

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