The Queen’s speech confirmed UK data protection laws will be reformed again to allow the safe sharing of information, which will assist businesses and marketers. However, it remains unclear in what way the legislation will be altered.
Earlier this month (May 11th), the Queen’s annual speech was revealed, stating that there will be a new Data Reform Bill.
This is to “support vibrant competition and innovation to drive economic growth”, according to an official government statement.
It added these reforms will “maintain high data protection standards without creating unnecessary barriers to responsible data use”.
The decision to alter the legislation came following a consultation by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), published in September last year. It closed in November, and included plans to remove or change requirements on UK organisations by the UK GDPR and UK Data Protection Act 2018.
Therefore, the new bill will be designed to boost competition between UK businesses by “reducing the burdens they face, for example by creating a data protection framework that is focused on privacy outcomes rather than box-ticking”, Lexology published.
It intends to ensure personal data is protected to a gold standard while also allowing organisations to share information so they can improve their services to the public.
While this sounds positive, the Data & Marketing Association (DMA) is sceptical about the implementation of the Bill, as it remains uncertain what it will entail.
Chief executive officer of DMA Chris Combemale has called for clarity from the DCMS, saying: ““The data, marketing and creative industries remain in limbo, unsure of what form the UK’s data protection reforms will take.”
He added: “Data-driven innovation can still deliver further growth across the digital economy, without compromising the UK’s data adequacy status or current privacy protections, but the government must move forward urgently.”
At the end of last year, the DMA issued a report responding to the consultation, addressing topics, such as AI and machine learning, reducing barriers to data flow, and privacy and electronic communication.
It states: “There is a lot of untapped value in data being held in the private and public sectors that, if unlocked, could have a transformative impact on the UK’s economy and society.”
The organisation added that this would benefit British citizens directly, as it would allow the government to provide a “stronger economy, more efficient and effective public services, and greater innovation in science and technology”.
Marketers would also gain an advantage if data was allowed to be shared more openly, as they could find out relevant information that would enable them to target their customer-base more directly.
For instance, by accessing more data on the socio-economic demographic of certain products and services, companies can tailor not only the products, but also their advertisements and media campaigns, to make sure they capture the correct audience.
This week’s Queen Speech was a historic moment, as Her Royal Highness was unable to open the new session of Parliament in the House of Lords for the first time in her almost-70-year reign due to mobility problems. Instead, Prince Charles stood in, delivering the speech for his mother.
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