Feeds

ICO: Volunteer to be audited by us, we might not bust you

'No, don't do that', says a lawyer

3 Big data security analytics techniques

The Information Commissioner's Office said more companies should offer themselves up for voluntary audits.

According to the quango's annual report, a third of organisations offered the chance to be audited by the ICO accepted.

Of the 603 breaches last year, 186 came from private companies. But only 19 per cent of these firms agreed to ICO audits.

The ICO promises its free data protection audits are not about "naming and shaming". The quango has written to some organisations offering the service.

But Kathryn Wynn, senior associate and data protection specialist at law firm Pinsent Masons said: "Companies should sort out their own procedures, and if necessary hire in outside help, before going to the ICO. Companies should have their house in order before calling in the regulator for a stamp of approval."

Wynn said organisations and companies should spend some time thinking about what to do if the worst did happen, as well as work hard to make sure it didn't.

She said: "Often the reaction to a breach is more important – look at Sony – no one can blame them for getting hacked, but you need to react properly afterwards."

A spokesman for the ICO said: "The ICO audit is designed to be constructive. We work with with organisations to find areas of concern and to improve general compliance. The scope of the audit is agreed in advance with companies. If we find a compliance issue we wouldn't necessarily take action."

Information Commissioner Christopher Graham said the organisation had made good progress in cutting the number of overdue Freedom of Information requests – the other part of the quango's responsibilities.

This year also saw the regulator impose its first non-compliance fines. The recipients were: Hertfordshire County Council – £100,000; A4e Limited – £60,000; Ealing Council – £80,000; and Hounslow Council – £70,000.

On European cookie law, Graham said the ICO would only take action against companies which take little action to comply.

You can watch Graham read the intro to the report or download it as a PDF at the ICO's website. ®

3 Big data security analytics techniques

More from The Register

next story
Dropbox defends fantastically badly timed Condoleezza Rice appointment
'Nothing is going to change with Dr. Rice's appointment,' file sharer promises
Audio fans, prepare yourself for the Second Coming ... of Blu-ray
High Fidelity Pure Audio – is this what your ears have been waiting for?
Record labels sue Pandora over vintage song royalties
Companies want payout on recordings made before 1972
MtGox chief Karpelès refuses to come to US for g-men's grilling
Bitcoin baron says he needs another lawyer for FinCEN chat
Number crunching suggests Yahoo! US is worth less than nothing
China and Japan holdings worth more than entire company
Zucker punched: Google gobbles Facebook-wooed Titan Aerospace
Up, up and away in my beautiful balloon flying broadband-bot
Apple DOMINATES the Valley, rakes in more profit than Google, HP, Intel, Cisco COMBINED
Cook & Co. also pay more taxes than those four worthies PLUS eBay and Oracle
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.