Consultation launched to strip privacy notices back to basics

Elle Todd

The ICO has launched a new consultation on its code of practice aimed at making privacy notices simpler and more reader friendly.

The ICO’s new route to ensuring that the public “get it”, appears to involve populating the code with cartoon characters which are a strange hybrid between BOD (remember that?) and South Park…check out the hilarious Chef with goatee in particular…

Animation aside, the code does give some good, straightforward explanation as to the purpose of a privacy notice and what information should be included. It also provides some further and reasonable analysis of how consent operates in the context of privacy policies (recognising that in some cases indivduals will not necessarily have a choice about the collection of their data) and about when privacy notices should be actively communicated and when just kept for reference if a subject asks for information.

For most, much of the document will come of little surprise and simply confirms a common sense interpretation of the law but for new companies or those just starting to collect personal data, it is a welcome guide.

The consultation closes on 3 April 2009.

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