Global Data & Privacy Update - 09.04.15

Author:Ms Margaret Tofalides
Profession:Clyde & Co

UK ICO welcomes nuisance calls and texts law change

The law in the UK surrounding nuisance calls and texts changed on 6 April to allow the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) to fine companies who make unsolicited calls. The change removes the requirement for calls or texts to have caused "substantial damage or substantial distress" and the ICO has committed to fining those who break the law.

Businesses have expressed concern about compensation claims

Following the recent Court of Appeal judgment in Vidal Hall & Ors v Google Inc companies are concerned about the potential exposure to damages in light of claimants no longer needing to show "damage and distress". Although Google were refused permission to appeal to the Supreme Court, it remains to be seen whether they will seek to clarify important cyber security issues within the judgment. In the interim, data controllers need to be aware of this change and the potential to increase levels of risk posed.

Google loses German regulator's challenge

Hamburg's privacy watchdog has this week ordered Google to get consent for or limit its use of data if combined with information already obtained would allow Google to establish customers' personal information such as marital status and financial standing. The ruling comes in the wake of increasing pressures on technology companies such as Facebook to give users more control over the use of their data and provide greater transparency around privacy policies.

New Australian data retention law passed to combat terrorism

The Telecommunications (Interception and Access) Amendment (Data Retention) Bill 2014 (Bill) has now passed Federal Parliament. It introduces new obligations on Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to retain consumer data for a minimum of two years in an attempt to combat terrorist attacks and serious crime. Critics argue that the Bill undermines their freedoms and is a vehicle for surveillance of the population.

AT&T pays USD 25 million fine for mobile phone data breach scam


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