FOI release

How many times the Home Office has been reported to the Information Commissioner’s office for alleged breaches

In response to a Freedom of Information request about how many times the Home Office has been reported to the Information Commissioner’s Office…

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In response to a Freedom of Information request about how many times the Home Office has been reported to the Information Commissioner’s Office for alleged breaches in relation to the following Acts.

  • Data Protection Act 1998 (the DPA)
  • Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA)
  • Environmental Information Regulations 2004
  • Privacy and Electronic Communications (EC Directive) Regulations 2003

We released the following information on 17 December 2009.

The ICO initiates contact with the Home Office in relation to complaints about both statutory and non-statutory issues, and therefore not all contact is made in relation to alleged breaches of the above legislation. We hold no information about the number of times the ICO has been contacted about compliance with any of the above legislation, as we do not know whether the ICO contacts us about all correspondence that it receives. However, we have provided information below about the contact that we have received from the ICO as we consider this to be relevant to your request. 

 
Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA)
We have records of having received 56 enquiries from the ICO regarding compliance with the DPA. These letters generally remind the department of its obligations under the DPA in relation to the handling of subject access requests, and request that outstanding requests are answered without delay. None of these letters constitute formal decisions about Home Office compliance with the DPA.
Furthermore, in January 2009 the ICO required the Home Office sign a formal undertaking after a contractor employed by it, PA Consulting, lost a memory stick holding personal data in August 2008. Further information on this can be found on the ICO website at this location:
http://www.ico.org.uk/upload/documents/library/data_protection/notices/home_office_undertaking.pdf

Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA)
Since May 2007 the Home Office has records of having received 71 enquiries from the ICO about the handling of FOI requests. We have received further correspondence from the ICO about non-statutory issues, such as the handling of internal review requests.
The Home Office also holds information indicating the number of times the ICO has upheld a complaint about its compliance with the FOI Act. This information is already readily available to you, and as such is exempt from disclosure under Section 21 of the FOI Act. You can find this information on the ICO’s website at this location:
http://www.ico.org.uk/enforcement/decision_notices

Environmental Information Regulations 2004 (EIR)
Privacy and Electronic Communications (EC Directive) Regulations 2003
The ICO has not contacted us in relation to either of these sets of regulations. Therefore no complaint about our compliance with either set of regulations has been upheld.

Date: Wed Sep 22 14:40:59 BST 2010