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Transparency under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

Implementation date 25th May 2018

The EU Article 29 Working Party (WP29) has recently published guidelines on the obligation of transparency concerning the processing of personal data under the GDPR. The concept of transparency appears as one of six principles that must be adhered to when processing data, but no actual definition has been provided under the GDPR.

Personal data must be processed in a “transparent manner” under Article 5(1)(a) of the GDPR. This is in addition to the other requirements that personal data must be processed lawfully and fairly as set out in that sub-article. Transparency is also intrinsically linked to the new principle of accountability under the GDPR. It follows from Article 5(2) that the data controller must be able to demonstrate that personal data is processed in a transparent manner with respect to the data subject.

The obligation applies to three central areas:

  1. The provision of information to data subjects related to fair processing to individuals.
  2. How data controllers communicate with data subjects in relation to their rights under the GDPR; and
  3. How data controllers facilitate the exercise by data subjects of their rights.

Relevant articles relating to transparency under the GDPR include: 5.1(a), 12, 13, 14.

Relevant recitals relating to transparency under the GDPR include: 39, 58, 59, 60, 61, 62.

According to the guidelines, in order to comply with the obligation of transparency, businesses should:

For any queries, please contact Anne O’Connell Solicitors at info@aocsolicitor.ie or +353 1 2903580
21st December 2017
Anne O’Connell
1-3 Burton Hall Road
Dublin 18

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