What Happens To Our Data Following Brexit?
Now that we’ve officially left the EU, questions are being asked about what happens to citizens’ data, when the EU laws no longer apply to the UK at the end of December 2020.
Brittany Kaiser a former employee of Cambridge Analytica turned whistle-blower has spoken to the Thomson Reuters Foundation. She said:
“Data is the world’s most valuable asset, yet users are vastly unaware of how their data is being sold and licensed to companies.”
Whenever we download a new app to our phone, or visit websites, we’re often asked to accept cookies or accept the terms and conditions surrounding an app. But who actually takes the time to read what these cookies or terms and conditions say?
In some cases, these terms and conditions give the owners of the app access to a person’s phone contacts, photos, locations and sometimes the camera and microphone.
Brittany Kaiser said:
“Even if you delete the app you can’t get your data back. Your privacy is gone.
“With less regulatory infrastructure it’s unarguable that people in the UK will be less protected.”
Although the UK falls under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), protecting its citizens from privacy and data breaches, and has done since May 2018, it’s difficult to see or predict what the future will hold once the Brexit transition period has ended.
Brittany Kaiser added:
“It’s still hanging in the balance whether the UK will still be subscribing to GDPR after Brexit or writing their own legislation.”
Ms Kaiser has some words of advice for people who are concerned about protecting their data.
“Start simple, read some of the terms and conditions of the apps on your phone and if you don’t like them, delete them.
“Call your MP, tell then that this is an essential question that want answered.”
Although it is still unclear as to how the land will lie regarding the UK’s data protection laws, it’s something that needs to be considered by those in power. However, whilst trade negotiations are still at the forefront of everyone’s mind, it’ll be interesting to see if GDPR and data protection will come as an after thought.
What do you think the future holds for UK data protection?