Areas of work

Data Protection

Data protection allows individuals to assert rights over how personal data about them is processed. However, many public authorities, private organisations and individuals seeking to assert their rights under the law, are unsure about their duties, responsibilities and rights under the 1998 Act, and the changes coming with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Members of 5RB advise on both the current law, and the law as set out in the GDPR which takes effect from May 2018. 5RB barristers regularly advise public authorities and private organisations in respect of their responsibilities, how to handle subject access requests and how to ensure they are compliant with the GDPR; as well as individuals wanting to obtain information held about themselves or who feel their data has not been handled appropriately. 5RB members can advise on the ‘right to be forgotten’ whether in relation to search engines or other publishers.

For media organisations, special exemptions to the Act apply in certain circumstances, in particular under section 32 of the Act and 5RB barristers are well-placed to advise on when this exemption and others will apply.

Closely related to data protection is freedom of information – the right of an individual or organisation to obtain access to non-personal information held by public authorities – as provided for in the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

5RB are well-placed to advise on all aspects of access to information and documents, whether through data protection, freedom of information and related sector specific rules and the common law, or other means such as obtaining access to court documents. Equally, 5RB are experts in protecting private information, whether through use of data protection law, misuse of private information and/or breach of confidence, other applicable areas of law or the relevant regulatory mechanisms.

5 recent Data Protection cases