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Guernsey To Hike Data Protection Fees

Friday, February 12, 2010

The States of Guernsey has approved an increase in the data protection fee which must be paid by every organization or business that processes personal data on computer.

From March 1, the annual notification fee will rise from GBP35 to GBP50, in line with those charged in Jersey and the Isle of Man.

Commissioner Peter Harris commented: “This is the first revision of the fee since August 2002, when it was changed from GBP75 for three years to GBP35 per annum. In fact the States approved this rise over three years ago, but it is only now being brought into effect”.

However, bona fide non-profit organisations will in future be exempt from the payment of a notification fee. In the past, many charities were exempt from notification, but some had to notify and so pay a fee, Harris informed.

“This means that there is now no financial obstacle to dissuade a charity from notifying and I would encourage every charity to take this opportunity to notify free of charge under the law.”

Every notification is included on the data protection register. The register includes contact details for every organisation which is notified and details of the personal data processed by that organisation.

The income from fees is paid directly to the States, but helps to offset the costs of the Data Protection Office, which provides compliance advice and guidance to organisations and advice to individuals about their rights under the law.

In 2009 the income from fees was GBP52,760 and it is anticipated that the increased fee should raise an extra GDP20,000 in a full year.