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Data Protection Act 1998

Why do I need to know about data protection?

The Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA) is the piece of domestic legislation which implements the European Data Protection Directive. It sets out provisions to ensure that all personal data are processed according to the eight ‘data protection principles’ set out in the Act, and to enable individuals to find out what data is held about them in electronic and some manual records.

The DPA is the key piece of legislation that you as a researcher or data custodian need to be aware of and understand as it governs when and in what circumstances the sharing of personal data is justifiable.

Please use the menu in the left hand column to navigate to the guidance pages on the DPA.

You will find on the right hand side of each page a link to a 'takeaway toolkit' which outlines the key points you need to know about data protection. By clicking on the link you can download this toolkit to view and print.