General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)


Data protection is the cornerstone of any organisations business offering, whether that is intellectual property, staff information, client or customer data, business strategy, financial information etc. However, whilst all require protection against theft, loss or compromise: nothing attracts particular attention that of personal data, often referred to as personally Identifiable Information (PII).

Within the UK currently, PII is safeguarded by the Data Protection Act 1998. However, this is likely to change within the next 9 months when the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) comes into force. The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has indicated very strongly that, despite BREXIT, the UK will adopt GDPR as its cornerstone of data protection.

As recently as this August 2017, Matt Hancock, Digital Minister, has proposed an overhaul of the UK data protection laws to reflect the GDPR obligations.

The road ahead for protecting personal data isn't always clear, and it certainly isn't always straight: however, we are confident that we can help steer you in the right direction, safely and securely with regard to GDPR. 

Protecting personal information should never be seen as a chore or a costly impediment. The right protection rightly reflects the moral code of the organisation in question.

More details can be found here:  



Article 1 of the EU GDPR is fairly key and deals with the subject matter and objectives. These are:

  • This regulation lays down rules relating to the protection of natural persons with regard to the processing of personal data and rules relating to the free movement of personal data
  • This regulation protects fundamental rights and freedoms of natural persons and in particular their right to the protection of personal data
  • The free movement of personal data within the Union shall be neither restricted nor prohibited for reasons connected with the protection of natural persons with regard to the processing of personal data


The principles of GDPR are similar to those in the DPA, with added detail at certain points and a new accountability requirement. The GDPR does not have principles relating to individuals’ rights or overseas transfers of personal data - these are specifically addressed in separate articles (see GDPR Chapter III and Chapter V respectively).

The most significant addition is the accountability principle. The GDPR requires you to show how you comply with the principles – for example by documenting the decisions you take about a processing activity.[1]

Key principles for protecting personal data

DPA 1998

GDPR (Article 5)

  • 1.Personal data shall be processed fairly and lawfully

(a) Processed lawfully, fairly and in a transparent manner in relation to the data subject (lawfulness, fairness and transparency)

  • 2.Personal data shall be obtained only for one or more specified and lawful purposes, and shall not be further processed in any manner incompatible with that purpose or those purposes

(b) Collected for specified, explicit and legitimate purposes and not further processed in a manner that is incompatible with those purposes; further processing for archiving purposes in the public interest, scientific or historical research purposes or statistical purposes shall, in accordance with article 89(1), not be considered to be incompatible with the initial purposes ( purpose limitation)

  • 3.Personal data shall be adequate, relevant and not excessive in relation to the purpose or purposes for which they are processed

(c) Adequate, relevant and limited to what is necessary in relation to the purposes for which they are processed (data minimisation)

  • 4.Personal data shall be accurate and, where necessary, kept up to date

(d) Accurate and, where necessary, kept up to date; every reasonable step must be taken to ensure that personal data that are inaccurate, having regard to the purposes for which they are processed, are erased or rectified without delay ( accuracy)

  • 5.Personal data processed for any purpose or purposes shall not be kept for longer than is necessary for that purpose or those purposes

(e) Kept in a form which permits identification of data subjects for no longer than is necessary for the purposes for which the personal data are processed; personal data may be stored for longer periods insofar as the personal data will be processed solely for archiving purposes in the public interest, scientific or historical research purposes or statistical purposes, in accordance with Article 89(1), subject to implementation of the appropriate technical and organisational measures required by this Regulation in order to safeguard the rights and freedoms of subject ( storage limitation)

  • 6.Personal data shall be processed in accordance with the rights of data subjects under this Act[2]

(f) Processed in a manner that ensures appropriate security of the personal data, including protection against unauthorised or unlawful processing and against accidental loss, destruction or damage, using appropriate technical or organisational measures ( integrity and confidentiality)

  • 7.Appropriate technical and organisational measures shall be taken against unauthorised or unlawful processing of personal data and against accidental loss or destruction of, or damage to, personal data
  • 8.Personal data shall not be transferred to a country or territory outside the European Economic Area unless that country or territory ensures an adequate level of of data subjects in relation to the processing of personal data protection for the rights and freedoms of data subjects in

Article 5(2) requires that

“The controller shall be responsible for, and be able to demonstrate, compliance with the principles.” (accountability)

[1] Source ICO

[2] Source ICO

11 Chapters & 99 Articles

With 99 Articles with which to become compliant (if applicable) its essential that the necessary measures, technical controls and procedures are in place. Additionally, organisations must evidence (prove) that they have documented how they protect personal data.

The Articles all fall within 11 Chapters:

Chapter 1 General provisions

Chapter 2 Principles

Chapter 3 Rights of the data subject

Chapter 4 Controller and processor

Chapter 5 Transfers of personal data to 3rd counties or international organisations

Chapter 6 Independent supervisory authority

Chapter 7 Cooperation and consistency

Chapter 8 Remedies, liability and penalties

Chapter 9 Provisions relating to specific processing situations

Chapter 10 Deleted acts and implementing acts

Chapter 11 Final provisions