Data protection in practice

Legal Business

Data protection issues are rarely far from the news. As the recent attack on Royal Mail, in January this year illustrated, not only are they publicly embarrassing, they can be commercially disastrous both for an attacked organisation and its customers.

For the optical profession, the matter has not all been plain sailing.

In December 2015, the General Optical Council (GOC) had to issue a public apology to registrants after it made a mistake when processing their personal data. In essence, the GOC had allowed the purchase of electronic copies of registrant information not with practice information, but instead, home addresses. Registrants were subsequently contacted at home by third-party firms. The GOC was lucky not to be fined.

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