EU must see if GDPR works before legislating again

The EU must adopt a wait and see approach after the introduction of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) before introducing further legislation, Daniel Dalton MEP said today.

GDPR comes into force across the EU today (25th May) and is the biggest overhaul of data protection legislation in over 20 years. It will ensure that people know how their data is being used and have control over it. There are concerns, however, that small and medium sized businesses will struggle to cope with the burden of the new measures.

Conservative Consumer Affairs spokesman, Mr Dalton, said: "People have a right to know who is collecting and storing their data and how they are using it. Users must also have a right to say no. GDPR will give people that control and is a necessary update to the existing out-of-date data protection rules.

"GDPR is a big step forward, but it is untested. Big companies and online platforms have the means to adapt to these changes, but smaller ones are struggling to do so. That's why the EU must adopt a wait and see approach before legislating any further.  Consumers want strong data protection rules, but this shouldn't be incompatible with innovation or ensuring online services remain free.

"We need to pause work on further legislation such as the ePrivacy rules that the European Parliament is discussing now. It's important we evaluate the effect GDPR has on small businesses, start-ups and the creative sector before changing the rules again or we risk suffocating innovation in Europe.

"The EU must also take a soft-touch approach in the early stages of GDPR. Everybody needs time to adapt and a grace period is necessary to ensure that companies and online platforms are given a chance before litigation or big fines. When policy-makers legislate such an overhaul of the rules, we must understand that this takes time and there will be false starts early on."

Mr Dalton has prepared a guide to help your business be GDPR compliant, you can find it here