Our colleagues over on Brodies PublicLawBlog have blogged on a recent decision of the Information Tribunal in relation to the definition of personal data.

The Tribunal’s decision places a strong emphasis on the Court of Appeal’s 2003 decision in Durant v the FSA, a widely criticised decision which applied a particularly narrow interpretation to the term, and led many to think that the European Commission may commence infraction proceedings against the UK for a failure to properly implement the Data Protection Directive.

Brodies PublicLawBlog

Here’s a phrase you won’t hear very often: the Information Tribunal has recently issued an interesting decision. (I of course use the word “interesting” the way all lawyers use it, which is to say quite wrongly. I also use the term “Information Tribunal” quite wrongly, as it is of course now the First-Tier Tribunal (Information Rights).)

The decision, involving the Financial Services Authority, concerns personal data – that most vexing of subjects – and in particular the interaction between Freedom of Information and the Data Protection Act. In this case, the Tribunal overturned a decision of the (UK) Information Commissioner, who had decided that the names of junior members of FSA staff could be withheld under section 40 of the (UK) Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the personal data exemption, equivalent to section 38 of FOISA) because the names were personal data and their disclosure would not be compatible with the data protection principles. The Tribunal…

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