GDPR - potential uses?

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R Totale's picture
R Totale
Joined: 15-02-18
May 22 2018 18:31
GDPR - potential uses?

So, apart from getting everyone's inboxes filled up with emails from every company you've ever given your details to, are there any potential uses to the new GDPR regulation? Like, obviously there's massive limits to how far legal rights mean in practice, especially ones that you can be leaned on to sign away (hello, working time regulations!), but I know that data protection laws have in the past been something of a stumbling block for the DWP - see for instance this or this.
I'm not an expert on data, the law, or data protection law, but if the new rules mean that protection about this stuff is being toughened up, does that give any potential advantages to, say, claimants wanting to minimise Jobcentre snooping? Or any other areas - I know a lot of the hostile environment, or "lovely fluffy environment that just happens to massively inconvenience migrants" or however they've rebranded it, is based around getting people to collect and share data, does the changes in the law have any potential impacts on resistance in those fields? Or is the whole thing pretty much irrelevant cos of laws being cobwebs for the rich and powerful anyway?

Steven.'s picture
Joined: 27-06-06
May 22 2018 18:47

Basically, no I don't think it will. Government organisations can still store information they need to perform their duties.

If anything, I was thinking that it might have the opposite effect, in that a number of government organisations are stepping up destruction of documents after 7 years. Which won't hamper their work at all, but which would hamper things like individuals' attempts to take legal action over things like sexual abuse or neglect of children in care and things like that – which people may not be able to complain about until after they are adults many years later.

dark_ether's picture
Joined: 12-09-12
Jun 15 2018 14:41

I think whilst there is still an air of confusion about what is/isn't allowed under the law, it could be a useful stick to threaten corporations with (not sure government departments would be so easily swayed). For example addressing a manager of a shop being protested with something like 'your security guard is filming us, which is collecting data without our consent, so you are in breach of the GDPR and must stop immediately'.

I mean pre-GDPR data protection legislation would already enable you to demand a copy of said recording, but it isn't very tempting when you can be charged £20 for that.

Croy's picture
Joined: 26-05-11
Jun 29 2018 18:34

There are multiple to whom GDPR makes legal exception. For instance, I work for a mental health service provider who run residential services (the whole care in the community thing once people are discharged from hospital) and service users have been ringing up demanding that we don't keep anything on them, which doesn't get done because we're legally obliged to have at least some info to be able to provide the service. This specific case I think is totally justified, but yeah, basically I think Steven is right. Freedom of information act requests are the most useful bit of legislation data wise. GDPR, which stipulates that as soon as something becomes un needed (and I think the criteria on this is pretty strict for a lot of things) it has to go.