Tory data policy puts emphasis on privacy

Dominic Grieve: Personal information belongs to you, not the state
Dominic Grieve: Personal information belongs to you, not the state

The Conservative Party has published a policy document outlining its stance on the use of personal information across the public sector.

Written by shadow Justice Secretary Dominic Grieve QC MP and shadow Justice Minister Eleanor Laing MP, “Reversing the rise of the surveillance state” sets out an 11-point plan intended to protect personal privacy and “hold government to account, in the event of the Tories winning the next general election.”

Scrapping the National Identity Register and the ContactPoint database of children are the lead strategies for rolling back the extent to which government currently holds “intrusive and expensive databases”. The vulnerabilities of these databases to data losses or security breaches are a particular concern within the policy, which aims for fewer central government databases. Removing DNA records of individuals who have not been charged, in compliance with a recent EU ruling, is also favoured.

Tories would also examine access by councils to personal communications data, which RIPA powers have enabled. A British Bill of Rights would also review how to protect personal privacy from surveillance.

Significantly for government departments and agencies, the policy has adopted a recommendation by the ICO for Privacy Impact Assessments to be carried out on any new legislation involving data collection or sharing. The ICO’s powers would also befurther enhanced.

Departments would also have to appoint a minister or senior civil servant to take responsibility for operational data security. The ICO would also be asked to publish best practice guideliness for data security in the private sector. A consultation programme is envisaged that would ultimately lead to a kite mark for best practice.

Latest from Marketing Week


Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now


Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.


From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.


Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3703 or email

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here