August 10, 2017 By Douglas Bonderud 2 min read

Even if Britain’s exit from the European Union (EU) proceeds on pace, the nation won’t leave the conglomerate of countries until early 2019. But a move of this magnitude comes with a host of complications — among them the need for Britain to comply with the European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which comes into effect May 2018.

SecurityWeek reported that the British government recently announced a U.K. data protection bill that both updates existing legislation and ensures the nation meets GDPR standards. While the official wording of the new law isn’t yet available, a published Statement of Intent provided some insight about upcoming provisions. Here are the highlights of this post-Brexit security plan.

Defending British Data

During the June 21 Queen’s Speech, Britain’s monarch stated the “new law will ensure that the United Kingdom retains its world-class regime protecting personal data,” SecurityWeek noted. To achieve this aim, the Minister of State for Digital Matt Hancock said that the new law will be implemented “in a way that as far as possible preserves the concepts of the Data Protection Act to to ensure that the transition for all is as smooth as possible, while complying with the GDPR and DPLED in full.”

Put simply? Businesses that comply with the new U.K. data protection bill should automatically be in compliance with the GDPR. But as noted by the SecurityWeek piece, there are new provisions in Britain’s law that go beyond the protection of the EU’s legislation.

For example, while the GDPR says companies must anonymize or pseudonymize personal data, Britain’s new bill creates an offense for “recklessly re-identifying individuals from anonymized or pseudonymized data.” Anyone who knowingly handles or processes this data is guilty of an offense, and the maximum penalty is an unlimited fine.

Digging Into the Details of the UK Data Protection Bill

According to The Telegraph, individuals gain more control over their personal data under the new law: While the GDPR already allows people to ask businesses for access to their personal data or have it wiped, Britain’s new legislation compels social media companies to delete all posts made by an individual before they were 18 if they make such a request.

Wired, meanwhile, noted that the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) gets more power to defend consumer interests by issuing higher fines — up to 17 million pounds or 4 percent of global turnover in serious cases.

In addition, the new law is expanding the definition of personal data to include identifiers such as IP addresses, internet cookies and DNA in an effort to limit web tracking without user consent. In the same vein, the U.K. data protection bill will also require consumers to opt in rather than opt out of email and cold-calling lists, along with making them explicitly aware that consenting to such practices could mean their data is passed on to third-party marketing or advertising agencies.

Britain is preparing for the IT complexity of Brexit with a new data protection bill that should align with GDPR expectations, while also providing Britons with greater control over their online privacy and personal data.

More from

ITG05 operations leverage Israel-Hamas conflict lures to deliver Headlace malware

11 min read - As of December 2023, IBM X-Force has uncovered multiple lure documents that predominately feature the ongoing Israel-Hamas war to facilitate the delivery of the ITG05 exclusive Headlace backdoor. The newly discovered campaign is directed against targets based in at least 13 nations worldwide and leverages authentic documents created by academic, finance and diplomatic centers. ITG05’s infrastructure ensures only targets from a single specific country can receive the malware, indicating the highly targeted nature of the campaign.X-Force tracks ITG05 as a…

Exploiting GOG Galaxy XPC service for privilege escalation in macOS

7 min read - Being part of the Adversary Services team at IBM, it is important to keep your skills up to date and learn new things constantly. macOS security was one field where I decided to put more effort this year to further improve my exploitation and operation skills in macOS environments. During my research, I decided to try and discover vulnerabilities in software that I had pre-installed on my laptop, which resulted in the discovery of this vulnerability. In this article, I…

Taking the complexity out of identity solutions for hybrid environments

4 min read - For the past two decades, businesses have been making significant investments to consolidate their identity and access management (IAM) platforms and directories to manage user identities in one place. However, the hybrid nature of the cloud has led many to realize that this ultimate goal is a fantasy. Instead, businesses must learn how to consistently and effectively manage user identities across multiple IAM platforms and directories. As cloud migration and digital transformation accelerate at a dizzying pace, enterprises are left…

IBM identifies zero-day vulnerability in Zyxel NAS devices

12 min read - While investigating CVE-2023-27992, a vulnerability affecting Zyxel network-attached storage (NAS) devices, the IBM X-Force uncovered two new flaws, which when used together, allow for pre-authenticated remote code execution. Zyxel NAS devices are typically used by consumers as cloud storage devices for homes or small to medium-sized businesses. When used together, the flaws X-Force discovered allow a remote attacker to execute arbitrary code on the device with superuser permissions and without requiring any credentials. This results in complete control over the…

Topic updates

Get email updates and stay ahead of the latest threats to the security landscape, thought leadership and research.
Subscribe today