Insights Cross border data protection and privacy enforcement: ICO signs multilateral agreement


The information Commissioner’s Office (“ICO”) has announced that it has signed a new international multilateral agreement with the Global Cooperation Arrangement for Privacy Enforcement (“Global CAPE”) to cooperate in cross-border data protection and privacy enforcement.

Established last year, the Global CAPE aims to: facilitate information sharing among its participants; establish mechanisms to “promote effective cross-border cooperation on the enforcement of Data Protection and Privacy Laws…including through referrals of matters and through parallel or joint investigations or enforcement actions”; and encourage information sharing and cooperation with ‘non-participating authorities’.

As the announcement from the ICO explains, the effect of its joining is that it will be able to assist with investigations and share information with fellow participants of the Global CAPE without having to enter separate memoranda of understanding with them.

Commenting on the announcement, John Edwards, the UK Information Commissioner, said “the ICO’s association with the Global CAPE is an important step in strengthening our relationship with other countries so we can work together to tackle global data protection and privacy issues. Personal information of UK people often moves between countries, so it’s vital that we work with our key international partners to design solutions that safeguard people’s privacy wherever they are based”.