Daily DashboardEuropean Data Protection Digest

ICO: Jail Time Needed for Privacy Violations

PRIVACY LAW—UK

July 29, 2011

A recent phone hacking scandal has prompted Information Commissioner Christopher Graham to call on the British government to implement prison sentences for those who use stolen personal data, Bloomberg reports. The Information Commissioner's Office previously recommended two-year prison terms for such offenses after a 2006 investigation into the sale of stolen personal data to journalists, the report states, but the government did not implement the proposal after journalists claimed it would limit free speech. In calling for stronger laws, Graham noted, "Unless people realize they can go to prison, it seems like a victimless crime."   
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