If we look at the history of the United Kingdom and their privacy rules, we will come to know that the UK has always been compliant with the European data protection laws and regulations, including the 2018 GDPR regulations. But now, new UK privacy protection post-Brexit laws are being introduced. These laws require companies to completely fulfill privacy regulations, rather than simply performing box-ticking procedures.
The new UK privacy rules apply to online operating procedures as well as business headquarters and may lessen the need for consent requests. Additionally, this regulation will certainly facilitate data transfer between the UK companies.
In this article, we will discuss in detail the post-Brexit laws and the latest GDPR updates. Also, we will take a closer look at how the UK privacy rules have changed over time.
Let's dive in!
The latest GDPR changes after the 2021 Brexit UK update
Post-Brexit is a term used to describe the situation in which the United Kingdom decided to leave the European Union. As a result, all existent data rules and regulations concerning data privacy have been highly affected.
The latest update was received on January 1st, 2021 when the United Kingdom officially announced their departure from the European Union. This departure was big news for the entire Europe, as the UK is now considered a third country, meaning they are now among the countries that are outside of the European Union and are no longer a part of the EU-member benefits programs.
Another update was introduced on June 28, 2021 in which the European Union announced their plans for the sharing and flow of personal information between these two entities for the next four years.
At this stage, all data from the UK websites dealing with the personal information of individuals were analyzed. After Brexit, companies and organizations provided their privacy rules and regulations and agreed with the adequacy decision.
The UK's adequacy decision is essentially the plan to proceed with unrestricted business as usual for the next four years.
The UK government claims that it will provide an equivalent level of data protection to the individuals after detaching itself from the European Union. However, this decision of the United Kingdom will be analyzed again over the next 4 years and a new decison will be made in June 2025.
Until that time, all organizations and companies that are working inside the United Kingdom should be focusing on the data privacy rules provided by the UK government and not by the European Union.
What will happen to post-Brexit GDPR in the UK?
Here are a few things that are likely to occur to GDPR post-Brexit.
- The UK authorities will independently proceed with the personal data flow between the UK and EU. There will be no restrictions until June 2025.
- Because the UK has denied the GDPR's domestic applicability, the general data protection rules and regulations in the United States should be modified enough to accommodate the domestic data privacy rules and regulations. The UK authorities have already aimed to achieve this goal by introducing the updated Data Protection Act. This Act is known as the UK-GDPR.
- It is important to note that the EU’s GDPR rules will also be part of privacy policies of the UK websites and companies that are processing data of the EU residents. However, during this transition times the companies that are doing business with the UK residents will also follow the EU-GDPR.
GDPR Compliance Post-Brexit
While conducting business with official companies and platforms as a UK resident, you need to check the compliance with GDPR or post- regulations.
Various world-leading solutions can ensure data privacy compliance on your platforms, however not all of them provide maximum security such as Helpy.
Helpy uses scanners and the latest algorithms to detect the trackers and other important privacy threats for a website to keep your data safe. With a reliable helpdesk software, you will no longer feel the need to check the Privacy Protection Act compliance on your own and relax knowing your database is in good hands!
The GDPR is an EU directive and it applies directly to all organizations working under the supervision of the European Union, irrespective of their sector. This data law was implemented in 2018 and provided a complete set of rules and regulations to all member states.
In other words, the GDPR requires all companies and organizations to follow the particular rules related to the transfer of personal data.
According to the GDPR, all companies and organizations must comply with the following set of rules:
- Responsibly ensure the provision of specific important information to data subjects.
- Create a lawful and logical setup or ground for the processing of personal data.
- Completing a DIPIA form when encountering a high risk of data exposure.
Here it is important to discuss the difference between the GDPR Act of 2018 and Data Protection Act of 2018.
The Data Protection Act of 2018 was the standard data protection law for the UK, while the GDPR Act of 2018 is a broader law that was not only implemented in the United Kingdom, but also in other parts of Europe.
The content of the Data Protection Act is primarily derived from the GDPR or General Data Protection Regulation. Thus, the similarity of data compliance for these two acts is undeniable.
The response of the UK Government regarding Data Protection Post-Brexit
As we have already discussed, the UK government has refused to follow the data protection rules and regulations of the EU-GDPR. Instead, the UK government has fully committed to following their own set of rules regarding data protection.
Now, the UK government is completely free to remove any rules and regulations that are derived from the European Union. Additionally, they are also free to make amendments to the EU-GDPR.
Post-Brexit, the UK has created its own GDPR, which is the UK's version of the retained GDPR. This rule came into effect after the United Kingdom decided to withdraw from the EU-GDPR compliance. This resulted in the European Union Withdrawal Act 2018 being amended by Schedule 1 to the Data Protection, Privacy and Electronic Communication Regulations 2019.
Section 3(10) of the Data Protection Act 2018 also defines and clearly explains that UK-based organizations are free to make amendments to their post-Brexit data protection regulations.
The GDPR of the UK not only applies directly to the people living inside the UK, including organizations and agencies, but it also applies to controllers and processors that live outside the UK. Basically, UK GDPR also covers all activities and processes that controllers and businessmen outside the UK are providing to individuals living inside the UK.
Key Changes Following Brexit
As we know, the UK was initially part of the EEA and EU, so at that time it was following all rules and regulations set by the EU GDPR, meaning data transferring was much simpler between other countries that were members of the EU.
The legal atmosphere changed once the EU announced that the UK was no longer a part of EU-GDPR and EEA. Instead, it became a 'third country' according to the EU. This meant that the free transfer of data between the UK and the EU-member countries ended and additional security standards became mandatory for the continuation of data flow.
Now, due to its third country label, the UK cannot proceed with data transfer without fulfilling additional requirements regarding the safety and security of personal data of the EU residents. On the other hand, there are requirements that particularly important if the data is transferred from the EU organizations in the UK.
However, the positive aspect of this decision is that the EEA is not immediately implementing all data safeguarding requirements. There is a temporary delay in the restrictions on data received by the UK organizations for the next few months.
So, even if the UK has technically become a separate country after January 1, 2021, UK organizations are still free to send and receive data from the EEA without fulfilling any additional safeguard requirements.
Some authorities think that the EU has made this decision to give the UK some space to rethink its plan to separate itself from the European Union.
In other words, this is a flexible time in which the UK can reconsider its decision and make a final one, which is known as the adequacy decision. This means that if the UK changes its mind, it has to obtain approval from the European Union and present itself as a country that can protect personal data according to the standards of the EU-GDPR.
Another benefit is that the European Commission has already published its draft regarding the decisions in which it has advised and recommended that the UK data compliance should include the majority of the GDPR rules. This draft was officially published on February 21, 2021. It is now awaiting final approval from the European Data Protection Board and Committee of the 27 EU Member Governments.