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    Published on December 4, 2023 last updated on December 4, 2023

    UK Government proposes amendments to Data Protection and Digital Information Bill

    In the last week of November, the UK government proposed common-sense changes to the Data Protection and Digital Information Bill to enhance data security, strengthen national security, and prevent fraud. These changes aim to build an innovative data protection regime, lower down on benefit fraud, and unlock post-Brexit opportunities.

    “This Bill will improve the efficiency of data protection for our security and policing partners—encouraging better use of personal information and ensuring appropriate safeguards for privacy”

    -James Cleverly, Home Secretary (Source: Gov.UK)

    To get a general overview, these are the key amendments:

    • Combatting benefit fraud: 

    The proposed changes grant new powers to obtain data from third parties, particularly banks and financial organizations, to help the government reduce benefit fraud. This could save up to £600 million over the next five years by allowing regular checks on the bank accounts of benefit claimants.

    • Preservation of data for deceased children:

    In cases of a child's death, especially by suicide, a 'data preservation process' is proposed. This would require social media companies to retain relevant personal data for subsequent investigations or inquiries, providing vital support to grieving families.

    • Use of biometric data for national security:

    The amendments cover the use of biometric data, such as fingerprints, to strengthen national security. Counter Terrorism Police will have enhanced abilities to retain biometrics of individuals posing a potential threat, supplied by organizations like Interpol.

    The proposed changes show the importance of maintaining high data protection standards while introducing measures to streamline processes for companies, strengthen national security, and support families in difficult times.

    “These changes help to establish the UK as a world-leading data economy; one that puts consumers and businesses at the center and removes the ‘one-size-fits-all’ barriers that have held many British businesses back”

    -Michelle Donelan, Secretary of State for Science, Innovation and Technology (Source: Gov.UK)

    The amendments will be considered by the House of Commons, with the goal of creating an innovative and flexible data protection regime that facilitates better public services, supports technological advancements, and protects the public purse.

    Read more about UK Data Protection Laws here. Join the conversation in our Yes We Trust community, a free discussion group for data privacy professionals and enthusiasts, on LinkedIn:

    Go to the Yes We Trust community

    avatar Jivika Lillaney

    Jivika Lillaney

    Content writer at Didomi. I am a digital creator who loves to explore the world and tick off things on my bucket list!