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 enters German alternative legal services market with Xenion acquisition

Multinational law firm Pinsent Masons has announced two acquisitions that will enable it to launch its flexible legal resourcing brand, Vario, into Germany.

Pinsent Masons advises CANCOM SE on its capital increase

International law firm Pinsent Masons has advised CANCOM SE on its share capital increase, valued at €174.2 million.

Pinsent Masons appoints new Head of Tax Fraud Investigations

International law firm Pinsent Masons has further enhanced its commercial litigation, regulatory and tax litigation practice with the appointment of Andrew Sackey as a contentious tax partner in its London office. Andrew will work with clients across each of the firm's five key global sectors – Energy, Infrastructure, Financial Services, Real Estate and Advanced Manufacturing & Technology.

People who viewed this press release also viewed

Show me all press releases

Pinsent Masons appoints new Head of Tax Fraud Investigations

International law firm Pinsent Masons has further enhanced its commercial litigation, regulatory and tax litigation practice with the appointment of Andrew Sackey as a contentious tax partner in its London office. Andrew will work with clients across each of the firm's five key global sectors – Energy, Infrastructure, Financial Services, Real Estate and Advanced Manufacturing & Technology.

Voters urge business to 'find its voice' in UK election debate

Two out of three voters believe business should 'make its voice heard' on the choices facing the UK electorate as the general election approaches.

Pinsent Masons advises Zurich on the sale of its UK Retail Wealth business

International law firm Pinsent Masons has advised Zurich, the global insurance provider, on the sale of its UK Retail Wealth business to Embark Group.

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