Letter: Do not bank on access to data flow after Brexit

David Schwimmer, chief executive of the London Stock Exchange Group, is right to say that more co-operation and continuity of service are in everyone’s interest as the UK leaves the EU, but this extends far wider than the City (“Europe’s finance sector in dark as Brexit transition nears end”, Report, November 27).

The end of the transition period brings an end to the UK’s access to the free flow of personal data provision granted between EU countries under data protection laws.

There remains hope that a decision may yet be reached for the UK to continue to be part of this arrangement, but put simply, businesses relying on this happening are taking too great a risk.

An end to the flow of data provision would restrict personal data moving from the EU to the UK, affecting everything from human resources records to customer details, shareholder registers to the use of cloud services.

With stakes that high, businesses must respond, and put provisions in place ahead of December 31 where required. There are instruments businesses can use to maintain their data flows, but these require consideration and preparation immediately. As the UK’s data protection regulator, there is more information on these options on our website.

The data market in the UK is the largest in Europe, and innovative use of personal data has driven growth in the digital economy, particularly over the past year.

It is vital businesses do not take the flow of that data for granted.

Elizabeth Denham
UK Information Commissioner
Wilmslow, Cheshire, UK

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