Monday, November 27, 2006

Children Act regulations workshop

The Department for Education and Skills is currently running a consultation on their draft Children Act regulations. These regulations will give DfES powers to start operating the Information Sharing Index, which will hold a range of data on the UK's young people.

As Assistant Information Commissioner Jonathan Bamford said on 22 November: “There has been a substantial growth in the information held about children and this is something we need to look at carefully. Just because technology means that things can be done with personal information, it does not always follow that they should be done. Public trust and confidence will be lost if there is excessive unwarranted intrusion into family life.”

We are holding a workshop on Tuesday 5 December at UCL to discuss the draft regulations. Participants will include Dr. Ian Brown from UCL's Department of Computer Science, Terri Dowty from Action on Rights for Children, Liberty, the Independent Schools Council and Liz Davies and Prof. Douwe Korff from London Metropolitan University. Brown, Dowty and Korff were co-authors with Ross Anderson, Richard Clayton and Eileen Munro of the FIPR report "Children's databases - safety and privacy" that was recently published by the Information Commissioner's Office.

Please come along if you would like to hear more about the regulations, and to contribute you and your organisation's perspective to the debate. We hope that the afternoon will be particularly invaluable in informing responses to the DfES consultation, which must be submitted by 14 December.

The meeting will be held from 2-4.30pm on Tues 5 December, in room 6.12 of the Malet Place Engineering Building at University College London. (NB this is an updated venue from our intial announcement.) You can find directions at Please e-mail I.Brown at to let us know you are coming.

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