international employment law firm alliance L&E Global
United Kingdom

UK: UK Information Commissioner’s Office publishes new guidance for employers on data subject access requests


From April 2022 to March 2023, the UK Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) received 15,848 complaints related to the right of subject access.  In publishing the new guidance for employers, the ICO aims to clarify common misunderstandings and highlight the importance of responding to subject access requests (SAR) in line with the rules that apply to them and within the timeframe allowed.

The new guidance takes the form of questions and answers and covers some common questions employers may have about SARs, including when they can refuse to comply with a request, what information can be withheld, dealing with requests for CCTV footage and whether they must disclose any non-work-related personal information.

Key Action Points for Human Resources and In-house Counsel

The new guidance for employers adds to, and repeats much of, the existing guidance, but contains some helpful examples and will be useful for employers when dealing with SARs.  The guidance does, however, still leave many areas of uncertainty for employers.