‘Data protection’ does not explain Sure directory changes

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The Office of the Data Protection Authority (ODPA) is aware of several inaccuracies, omissions, and previously ex-directory entries in the 2019 Sure Directory with data protection being cited, it would appear, as a reason for some of these issues.

The legal requirement for personal data to be accurate and, where necessary, kept up to date has been a feature of data protection legislation since the Bailiwick’s first data protection law in 1986. The GDPR-equivalent local law that came into effect in 2018 does not require Sure to alter their previous practice of allowing customers to specify how their entry appears in the directory and it is not clear why the new law has been cited as a reason for the change in approach.

Sure, along with several of their concerned customers, have made the ODPA aware that previously ex-directory numbers have been included in the 2019 directory. This is contrary, it would seem, to customers’ previously advised instructions to Sure.

Emma Martins, the Bailiwick’s Data Protection Commissioner commented on the risk this potentially poses to people.

‘Data protection is entirely about protecting people. I am very concerned that it would appear a number of ex-directory phone numbers have been published in error. Some people rely on ex-directory status for their personal safety so exposing their personal data in this way can be very distressing, and potentially puts them at risk.’

Any Sure customers affected are asked to contact Sure in the first instance.


NOTES 

Data protection is often, wrongly, cited as a reason why something is or is not done. Read ‘Six data protection myths busted’ at: www.odpa.gg/myths

The ODPA was disappointed to see that its own listing, on page 42 of the Sure Directory is incorrect. However, the listing in the ‘A-Z of Public Services’ is correct.