2 min read

Writen by Zlatko Delev

Posted on: October 5, 2022

UK plans how to replace GDPR?

The UK appears to be pushing ahead with plans to reform the country’s data protection regime, potentially foisting more red tape on British businesses.

In a speech at the Conservative party conference this week, new digital secretary Michelle Donelan reiterated the government’s intention to move away from the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), while indicating that previous proposed legislation may be set for more changes.
“I am announcing that we will be replacing GDPR with our own business and consumer-friendly, British data protection system,” she said. “Our plan will protect consumer privacy and keep their data safe, whilst retaining our data adequacy so businesses can trade freely.”

The statement comes less than four months after the announcement of a GDPR replacement, the Data Protection and Digital Information Bill, which was due to have its second reading in Parliament on 5 September. However, this was cancelled after the announcement of Liz Truss as the new Conservative party leader and prime minister.

In February last year, the EU ruled that the UK currently offers an ‘essentially equivalent’ level of data protection to both the GDPR and the Law Enforcement Directive (LED). However, it said, it reserves the right to change its mind if the UK diverges too far from EU law.

And many believe that the UK’s plans will see that divergence extend too far.

Donelan rejects those concerns. “We will look to those countries who achieve data adequacy without having GDPR, like Israel, Japan, South Korea, Canada and New Zealand,” she said in her speech.

“I can promise… that it will be simpler, it will be clearer, for businesses to navigate. No longer will our businesses be shackled by lots of unnecessary red tape.”

In fact, though, any significant divergence is likely to mean more red tape, not less, as organizations are forced to comply with more than one data protection regime.

The Data Protection and Digital Information Bill – which Donelan failed to name-check during her speech – is now apparently to be paused for further consideration. However, with the next general election set to take place within the next eighteen months, it’s possible that it will never progress any further.

Source: Forbes

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