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Culture Media and Sport written question – answered on 27th November 2012.

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Photo of John Robertson John Robertson Labour, Glasgow North West

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport

(1) if she will assess the merits and feasibility of the Government establishing an online dashboard to help internet users find out what personal data is held about them online;

(2) if she will assess the feasibility of a system which would allow UK internet users to withdraw all personal data held about them online.

Photo of Helen Grant Helen Grant The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Women and Equalities

I have no plans to do so.

Under the Data Protection Act 1998, individuals may already request their personal data from organisations, and have rights in certain circumstances to delete the personal data held on them. The European Commission has published a proposal for a new data protection regulation which aims to strengthen these rights.

The concept of individuals obtaining a copy of the data which organisations hold about them has parallels with the UK's midata programme which encourages organisations to release data which they hold about customers back to them in a portable, electronic format. The Government have recently consulted on introducing a power to make this mandatory for specified sectors.

In terms of having the right to have data deleted many respondents to the Government's Call for Evidence on the Commission's proposals argued that it was unfeasible for all personal data to be deleted where this has been made available online and replicated.

Negotiations on the new EU proposals are ongoing and are expected to last well into 2013.

Does this answer the above question?

Yes2 people think so

No0 people think not

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