Data breach whistle-blowers rise after GDPR

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General Data Protection Regulation has given people the courage to notify the authorities on any data breaches that otherwise may have gone under their radar.

According to law firm RPC, there has been a 165 per cent increase in the number of whistle-blower reports since GDPR came into force last May. Looking at raw figures, a total of 82 reports have been made to the ICO, compared to 31 before GDPR.

The report also states that ICO is ‘actively soliciting whistle-blowers’ to come forward with any information.

Richard Breavington, Partner at RPC, comments: “Data breaches are now regularly headline news stories and that means more whistle-blowers coming forward. In recent years, data protection has become a major concern not just of Government and regulators, but also the general public. It is not just disgruntled employees who act as whistle-blowers, but genuinely concerned individuals. With that increased pressure, along with the new responsibilities from GDPR, businesses need to have the right security protections and procedures in place or face potentially significant consequences if there is a data breach.”

 “Businesses need to ensure, for instance, that their cyber insurance policies have access to the experts needed to contain any data breach and limit its potential impact.”

Under GDPR, businesses can be fined up to €20 million for failing to protect user data. The report concluded that whistle-blower testimony was a crucial part of the Cambridge Analytica case.

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