Irish data protection chiefs denied GDPR fighting fund

irishThe Irish Data Protection Commission has hit out over a funding shortfall after Dublin snubbed its request for extra cash to keep the world’s biggest tech giants in check, insisting it is way down the pecking order in terms of both budget and staffing.

With so many tech businesses setting up their Euro HQs in Ireland – including Apple, Amazon, Google, Facebook, eBay, PayPal, LinkedIn, Twitter, Salesforce.com, Intel and Oracle – the DPC is one of the most powerful regulators in the world.

However, it continues to insist it is being under-resourced. According to its recent pre-budget submission, the DPC had sought €5.9m to bring its annual budget to €21.1m but received €1.6m instead – an 11% increase on its allocation for this year – bringing its total funding to €16.9m for 2020.

The watchdog is targeting staffing levels of 224, arguing it is currently way below where it should be. The DPC says it had hoped to have 180 staff on the books by the end of this year but that it will have just 148 due to the “highly competitive landscape for specialist skills”.

On current terms, the DPC says it is seventh the largest EU data protection authority in budgetary terms, eighth in terms of staffing.

In sharp, contrast the UK Information Commissioner’s Office has a budget of £30m and nearly 700 staff.

In its submission, the DPC said: “It is arguable [we] should be the largest given the unique role of Ireland and the DPC in lead-supervising for the EU the world’s largest tech platforms under the GDPR.

“Given the role of the DPC as a Lead Supervisory Authority, the office carries a disproportionate burden of the EU’s collective effort to regulate the data processing activities of global tech giants which are active in the European market.”

The decision to reject the DPC’s funding request comes just weeks after the regulator ruled that the Irish Department of Social Protection was in breach of data protection law for retaining data on more than 3 million people who hold a public services card.

However, the Irish government denied this was retaliation. The Department of Public Expenditure & Reform said that “the unique circumstances around this budget inevitably meant that the demands from departments and agencies could not be fully met”.

Related stories
Oops we did it again: Twitter admits fresh data gaffe
Verizon faces GDPR probe as WhatsApp decision looms
Irish data regulator launches inquiry into adtech giant
Irish confirm seven GDPR probes as Facebook turns 15
Watchdog collars Facebook over messenger merger plan
Irish data chief hits back over GDPR ‘soft touch’ claims
Irish boost budget for data regulator over GDPR fears

Print Friendly

To leave a comment please register – it takes less than a minute and is free of charge. You will also get our weekly email update The DM Report (to opt out contact subscriptions@decisionmarketing.co.uk). If you are an existing user, please log in. If you have forgotten your log-in details please email info@decisionmarketing.co.uk to get them reset!

Existing Users Log In
 Remember Me  
New User Registration
*Required field