Dealing with the Information Commissioner's Office

The following Risk & Compliance practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Dealing with the Information Commissioner's Office
  • What is the Information Commissioner's Office?
  • What legislation does the ICO cover?
  • What functions does the ICO perform?
  • What are the ICO's objectives?
  • What audit powers does the ICO have?
  • In what circumstances will the ICO carry out audits?
  • Voluntary audits
  • Compulsory audits
  • Random compliance checks and visits
  • More...

Dealing with the Information Commissioner's Office

What is the Information Commissioner's Office?

The Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) is the UK's independent authority set up to uphold information rights in the public interest and to promote openness by public bodies and data privacy for individuals.

The ICO is an independent public body which is sponsored by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.

Each Information Commissioner is appointed for a term not exceeding seven years.

The ICO's main office is in Wilmslow, Cheshire. It also has offices in Edinburgh, Cardiff, Belfast and London.

The ICO's website is www.ico.org.uk and sets out key information about the ICO.

What legislation does the ICO cover?

The ICO deals with the following legislation:

  1. the UK General Data Protection Regulation (UK GDPR)

  2. the Data Protection Act 2018 (DPA 2018)

  3. the Privacy and Electronic Communications (EC Directive) Regulations 2003 (PECR), SI 2003/2426

  4. the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FIA 2000)

  5. the Environmental Information Regulations 2004 (EIR), SI 2004/3319

  6. the INSPIRE Regulations 2009, SI 2009/3157

  7. the Re-use of Public Sector Information Regulations 2015, SI 2015/1415

  8. the Electronic Identification and Trust Services for Electronic Transactions (Amendment etc) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019, SI 2019/89

  9. the Network and Information Systems Regulations 2018, SI 2018/506, and

  10. the Investigatory Powers Act 2016

What functions does the ICO perform?

The ICO performs a number of functions in relation to the above legislation, including:

  1. handling enquiries,

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