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Data Protection

Volume 129: debated on Wednesday 9 March 1988

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To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many subject access requests under the terms of the Data Protection Act his Department has received; what was his estimate of this number; whether he is reconsidering the subject access fee charged by his Department as a result; and whether he will make a statement.

During the period 11 November 1987 to 1 March the Home Office received 16 requests for subject access.It was not judged possible to make any firm advance estimate of likely take-up, but there was an indication, on the basis of experience in other European countries, that requests might be in the range of 0·1 to 1·0 per cent. per annum of records held, that is between 5,000 and 50,000 requests a year to be addressed to the Home Office.There are no plans to reconsider the subject access fees charged by the Department.

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department why he will not hold discussions with the Data Protection Registrar to produce a code of practice covering national security purposes as is possible under the terms of part V of the Data Protection Act.