GDPR: How might a reform impact private investigators?
In May 2018 the UK adopted the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). The implementation of the privacy law encapsulates new privacy rules and stipulations. Data protection has always been an issue of utmost importance to private investigators. However, proficiency in collecting data is a complicated task due to the profession being unregulated. Nonetheless, under GDPR, private investigators must abide by privacy and data laws in adherence to the country they are conducting data retrieval in.
The government recently announced plans for the UK to “overhaul privacy rules in post-Brexit departure from GDPR.” With the government’s plan to move away from European Data Protection Regulations, what will this mean for private investigators?
Why does the government want to move away from GDPR?
The UK’s departure from the EU presented a greater burden for conducting data retrieval for UK businesses. For UK private investigators, it is no longer a single requirement to adhere to the EU GDPR. Private investigators based in the UK must also operate in compliance with the UK GDPR and the UK Data Protection Act.
Earlier this year, the European Union formally recognised the UK’s high data protection standards. Thus, continuing a “seamless flow of personal data from the EU to the UK.” However, with the government’s plan to “overhaul” GDPR, it will be interesting to see whether this will prompt the European Union to rethink the approval of the adequacy agreement.
The UK government’s announcement to move away from European Data Protection Regulations comes as no surprise. The regulation itself has been criticised for its “over-reliance on consent-based permissions.” The alarming increase of box-ticking when visiting a website has been presented as a notable provocation. In an interview with the Telegraph, culture secretary, Oliver Dowden stated that the UK data laws would require “reforming,” so they are based on “common sense, not box-ticking.” Furthermore, Dowden suggests the UK’s subsequent departure from the EU, has created an “opportunity to develop a world-leading data policy that will deliver a Brexit dividend for individuals and businesses across the UK.”
The decision to diverge from the data protection regulations could be beneficial for the UK. In contrast, the EU could regard this as a risky move.
What impact could the “overhaul” of GDPR mean for private investigators?
As it stands, overhauling GDPR in the UK will have little to no impact on business practices for private investigators. The role of a private investigator may involve the process of data retrieval from foreign states. Therefore, to allow the continuation of this process, UK private investigators will still have to abide by the EU GDPR.
Essentially, it could be projected that only UK companies without European ties would gain certain benefits of moving away from GDPR in the UK.
At Conflict International, we are a London based private investigator company. We also operate globally, with international offices, in the UK, Asia, Europe and the US. Due to our ability to deploy international agents swiftly, we hold a global presence. As a leading industry professional, we adhere and commit to the industry standard Code of Practice and conduct business in compliance with GDPR.
If you would like to discuss how Conflict International can help you with your case:
Please contact us at our London Head Office on +44 (0)20 7917 2939 or email us.
Alternatively, please contact our US Head Office on +1-212-710-5919 or email here.