Some so-called experts might have poo-pooed it but data regulators across the EU have confirmed a sharp rise in their workload since GDPR came into force, with an increase in both breach notifications from organisations and data protection complaints.
While the UK Information Commissioner’s Office could not give exact numbers, the French data protection regulator CNIL has reported a 50% increase in the number of complaints since May 25 and in Austria more than 100 complaints have been filed in the past month, along with 59 breach notifications – the same number that would typically be received in eight months.
An ICO spokesperson said: “It’s early days and we will collate, analyse and publish official statistics in due course. But generally, as anticipated, we have seen a rise in personal data breach reports from organisations. Complaints relating to data protection issues are also up and, as more people become aware of their individual rights, we are expecting the number of complaints to the ICO to increase too.”
Ian Woolley, chief revenue officer at data privacy specialist Ensighten, said that the increases were unsurprising given the strong public interest in the new rules.
He added: “Even before GDPR was officially enforced, businesses and individuals expressed a lack of confidence, with our recent research showing that nearly half (45%) of UK businesses expected to be fined for GDPR non-compliance, and even put money aside in preparation.
“Prevention is better than cure (or penalty) and those firms who really engage with the process will be treated more gently by regulators. It’s vital to have control over customer consent and data governance procedures from the moment a visitor lands on the website.”
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