Privacy campaigners have ‘overwhelmed’ data protection watchdog

Privacy campaigners have 'overwhelmed' data protection watchdog

Helen Dixon

Privacy rights campaigners have overwhelmed Ireland’s data protection watchdog with calls for sweeping investigations of entire industries, Data Protection Commissioner Helen Dixon has said.

Speaking to The New York Times, Ms Dixon suggested that many people had overestimated the impact of the EU General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) on the practices of major technology companies.

She said there is “no doubt” that firms will receive fines following investigations, but the GDPR “doesn’t allow for taking on an entire sector”.

However, she said the Data Protection Commission has had a positive influence on companies even where it is not carrying out formal investigations.

Ms Dixon said: “There are lots of different ways to go about creating a positive effect. Not all of them cater around fines and the superficial commentary we sometimes see.”

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