Friday, February 25, 2011

Subject access requests up by 25% as employees seek to see HR files

Elaine Edwards has an interesting report from the Irish Computer Society Annual Data Protection Conference:
THE NUMBER of complaints from people seeking access to personal information held on them increased last year due to the economic downturn, with many people concerned about potential or actual dismissal from their jobs.

Data Protection Commissioner Billy Hawkes said yesterday the top item for complaints to his office in 2010 was about failure to respond adequately to requests for access to personal data.

Individuals have a right under the Data Protection Acts to be given this data. “In past years, the top spot was always occupied by unsolicited direct marketing,” Mr Hawkes said. “I think with the economic downturn we are currently suffering, we’ve seen increasing use of the right of access by people who are fearful that they are going to lose their jobs or, who sometimes may have lost them.

“They are using the right of access to see what exactly is going on in relation to them within a particular organisation, or to see was it justified that they should have been picked out for dismissal from the company.”
Daragh O'Brien has also put up a screencast of his presentation at that conference.

Update: Elaine Edwards has more from the conference here, discussing the need for reform of data breach reporting.

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