Book Helps Companies Remedy Shortfall in Data Protection Awareness

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Ely, England — April 7
Following the recent finding that only roughly half of employees handling personal information have been trained in their Data Protection Act (DPA) responsibilities, IT Governance has published a new pocket guide titled Data Protection and Compliance in the UK. Written by leading data protection experts from international law firm Pinsent Masons LLP, the book provides anyone involved in the protection and security of personal data with an easily read discussion of the requirements of the DPA and how these must be met.

In a February 2008 survey of 130 technology and compliance professionals, IT Governance discovered an apparent gulf between the DPA awareness of senior management and that of employees actually handling personal data. Eighty-two percent of organizations had clear introduced policies and procedures for protecting personal data, and more than 80 percent had appointed a data controller or someone responsible for maintaining privacy; however, only 55 percent of employees handling personal data had been trained in their legal responsibilities with respect to this information.

The secure management of personal digital information is becoming a key challenge for public and private sector organizations alike, with the U.K.’s information commissioner calling for DPA breaches to be subject to heavier and more strictly enforced penalties. It is therefore essential that everyone responsible for securing personal data within an organization have a practical understanding of their legal responsibilities.

Data Protection and Compliance in the UK has been published as an inexpensive and easily read introduction for any employee required to support compliance with the DPA. It outlines U.K. and EU regulations and the rights of individuals and security obligations before addressing topics including IT monitoring and interception, enforcement provisions and penalties for noncompliance. The book also includes a helpful compliance checklist for staff, ensuring that its recommendations can swiftly be brought into practice.

Data Protection and Compliance in the UK is written by Rosemary Jay and Jenna Clarke of Pinsent Masons’ respected Information Law Team, which was listed by Chambers 2008 as one of the U.K.’s top teams for data protection. Rosemary, a partner who heads the team, has specialized in data protection for more than 20 years and is ranked as one of the U.K.'s top lawyers in the area. She advises on privacy, confidentiality, data protection, access and related information law issues. Clarke is a trainee and advises and writes on data protection and freedom of information issues. 

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