Jeremy Corbyn and the DPA

July 12th, 2017 by Robin Hopkins

Remember Jeremy Corbyn in his pre-cult figure days? (Okay, I know he has always been a cult figure to some – but I mean before the election and Glastonbury and so on). Remember the CCTV footage of him slouching about in a vestibule on a busy Virgin train? If so, you will probably remember that Virgin responded to the suggestion of overcrowding by publishing CCTV footage from the train journey to show that there were seats available. Did it breach the DPA in doing so? Read more »


Disclosure of judge’s handwritten notes – the ICO speaks

July 11th, 2017 by Anya Proops QC

Some of you may have read in last week’s Guardian of an ICO ruling which resulted in the Ministry of Justice handing over a judge’s handwritten notes under data protection legislation (if not, see the article here). If you did read the article, it may be that you are now scratching your head trying to work out why and how the notes came to be disclosed. Well you need scratch no longer – here is the ICO decision letter (for which thanks to Mrs Percival). The following appears from the decision letter: Read more »


Flushing out Wrongdoing: the DPA and the Publication of Allegations about Toilets

June 30th, 2017 by Christopher Knight

Local government is an exciting place. And because it is an exciting place, filled with thrusting go-getting types who live on the edge of danger, there is the risk of occasional accusations of wrongdoing. Councillor Hussain, a Labour member, of that parish is the subject of serious allegations – which have not yet been determined – to whit that he procured the sale of some toilets to a person connected to him at an undervalue and that he expunged some parking tickets issued to family members. Read more »


Journalists beware: privacy can trump expression, even with open-source data

June 29th, 2017 by Robin Hopkins

You are a journalist wanting to report on an issue of indisputable public interest. The issue involves people’s personal data, but it comes from publicly available sources. There could be no possible objection to your publishing that personal data as part of your story, right? Wrong – at least on the facts of the Satamedia v Finland case, on which the Grand Chamber of the ECtHR gave judgment this week. Read more »


Don’t mention the bigger picture

June 29th, 2017 by Peter Lockley

The definition of ‘environmental information’ is notoriously wide. Notorious too is the difficulty of applying it and the lack of binding authority on how to go about the task.

To date the leading authority has been the Upper Tribunal’s decision in DECC v IC and Henney [2015] UKUT 0671 (AAC). Now we have BEIS v IC and Henney [2017] EWCA Civ 844. It’s the same appellant under a different name, and the same approach under a different label: in a nutshell, the Court of Appeal agreed with everything that the Upper Tribunal did, except for calling it ‘the bigger picture approach’. Read more »


Data privacy and freedom of expression – new Strasbourg judgment

June 27th, 2017 by Anya Proops QC

Hot of the press – The European Court of Human Rights has just handed down its judgment in the case of Satamedia v Finland. This is an important judgment on the relationship between the right to data privacy (even in respect of data which is publicly available) and the right to freedom of expression. More analysis to follow in due course.

Anya Proops QC