Sanctions and enforcement under the DPA 1998 [Archived]
Produced in partnership with 5RB

The following Information Law practice note produced in partnership with 5RB provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Sanctions and enforcement under the DPA 1998 [Archived]
  • Information Commissioner
  • Enforcement notices
  • Assessment notices
  • Request for assessment
  • Information notices
  • Monetary penalties
  • Offences
  • Information Rights Tribunal
  • Appeals
  • More...

Sanctions and enforcement under the DPA 1998 [Archived]

ARCHIVED: This archived Practice Note provides information on the data protection regime before 25 May 2018 and reflects the position under the Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA 1998). This Practice Note is for background information only and is not maintained.

Information Commissioner

The DPA 1998 is enforced by the Information Commissioner and their officers at the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO). The Information Commissioner reports directly to Parliament. The Information Commissioner's duties are:

  1. to promote good practice and observance of DPA 1998 by data controllers

  2. to publish information and give advice

  3. to develop codes of practice, and

  4. international co-operation:

    1. with the European Commission and supervisory authorities in other European Economic Area (EEA) States

    2. in relation to international obligations of the UK, and

    3. in relation to the Council of Convention for the Protection of Individuals with regard to Automatic Processing of Personal Data

The ICO has published a guide to data protection, intended to assist data controllers. Numerous other topic guides are also published by the ICO on its website on specific issues such as closed-circuit television (CCTV) use, data sharing and data protection principles applicable to employment relationships.

In the performance of their enforcement duties, the Information Commissioner may:

  1. serve an enforcement notice

  2. carry out an assessment

  3. serve an information notice

  4. serve a ‘special information notice’

  5. impose monetary penalties

  6. prosecute offences contrary

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