Complaints to ICO up 30%
The latest ICO Annual Report shows that data protection complaints have soared by over 30%. 32,714 cases were closed in the year 2009/10. Queries about data use were also up and the Office dealt with over 200,000 calls, mostly from members of the public concerned about use of their data.
The biggest volume of complaints was about Subject Access Requests but direct marketing complaints made up the second largest sector generating complaints.
Those who think the ICO is a toothless tiger might consider the fact that the Office actively investigated over 9,000 complaints and found fault in 62% of cases requiring changes in practice for the data controllers concerned.
No wonder Chris Graham felt the need to issue a warning: “Respect for information rights is not optional. Organisations that ignore their responsibilities will not only lose the confidence of citizens and consumers but could face painful enforcement action from the ICO as well”. Graham also re-iterated his call for prison sentences to be applicable in cases of illegal data trading.
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