Data watchdog needs to give business clear guidelines on data security & compliance, says Pinsent Masons

24 Jan 2013 | 05:12 pm | 1 min. read

Marc Dautlich, data protection law specialist at Pinsent Masons, comments on Sony's £250,000 fine by Britain’s data watchdog over a cyber attack breach that compromised the personal information of millions of PlayStation users. The Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) issued the penalty after it found the attack on the Sony PlayStation Network in April 2011 could have been prevented:

"Organisations need to be given guidance on what technical measures can be said to constitute an appropriate standard of security for the purposes of compliance with the Data Protection Act (DPA).

"The Sony appeal could be extremely interesting as it may provide an insight into what the ICO considers to be an appropriate standard of security that organisations have to have in place, particularly as it is a case involving a company in the private sector.

"Organisations are increasingly subject to malicious attacks and clarity from the ICO is needed about just how good security needs to be to meet the requirements of the DPA.

"This is an important issue at the moment, but it will come even more into focus if all organisations are mandatorily obliged to report data breach incidents as would be the case if proposed reforms to EU data protection laws are introduced as currently drafted.

"In our experience it is also very often the case that security incidents go hand-in-hand with a finding that organisations are holding too much personal data. This case should highlight the need for firms to concentrate on their retention policies and give the issue sufficient attention."

-Ends-

Notes to Editors:

Under the Data Protection Act (DPA) organisations must take "appropriate technical and organisational measures ... against unauthorised or unlawful processing of personal data and against accidental loss or destruction of, or damage to, personal data".

The Act also requires organisations to ensure that the personal data they hold is "adequate, relevant and not excessive in relation to the purpose or purposes for which they are processed".

For further information please contact:
Arti Mohan, PR Advisor
Tel: 020 7418 7106
Email: [email protected]

Latest press releases

Show me all press releases

Pinsent Masons is successful with City of Munich landmark Oktoberfest appeal

Multinational law firm Pinsent Masons is advising the City of Munich in appeal proceedings brought by the organisers of a planned Oktoberfest event in Dubai. The organisers provided cease-and-desist undertakings, thereby in effect accepting a preliminary injunction issued in this landmark case by the District Court in favour of the City of Munich.

Pinsent Masons advises Northern Gritstone on £215m fund raising

Multinational law firm Pinsent Masons has advised the new investment business Northern Gritstone, founded by the Universities of Leeds, Manchester and Sheffield, on its £215m fund raising.

Pinsent Masons appoints new head of China

Multinational law firm Pinsent Masons has appointed financial services partner Kanyi Lui as Head of China following the implementation of a refreshed leadership structure for the firm’s Asia Pacific network.

People who viewed this press release also viewed

Show me all press releases

Pinsent Masons is successful with City of Munich landmark Oktoberfest appeal

Multinational law firm Pinsent Masons is advising the City of Munich in appeal proceedings brought by the organisers of a planned Oktoberfest event in Dubai. The organisers provided cease-and-desist undertakings, thereby in effect accepting a preliminary injunction issued in this landmark case by the District Court in favour of the City of Munich.

Neil Black named as head of Pinsent Masons’ Manchester office

Multinational law firm Pinsent Masons has appointed employment partner, Neil Black, as the new head of its Manchester office.

Pinsent Masons promotes 23 to its partnership

Multinational law firm Pinsent Masons has promoted 23 to partner, effective as of 1 May, strengthening its partnership outside of traditional legal services and underscoring its strategic aim to build a purpose-led, professional services business with law at the core.

For all media enquiries, including arranging an interview with one of our spokespeople, please contact the press office on

+44 (0)20 7418 8199 or 

Location contacts