A Code of Conduct for the charities sector – a possibility?

Helena Wootton explores the issues with a code of practice for the charity sector. Is one needed, and what should be included in it?

As Francis of Assisi said: “Where there is charity and wisdom, there is neither fear nor ignorance”. The charities sector is no stranger to data protection challenges; remember the ICO’s fines in 2016 and 2017, wealth screening, data matching and safeguarding crisis requiring record keeping on volunteers, not to mention the impact of the GDPR which saw a reduction in data being retained, and a decline in fundraising.

In 2017, the ICO provided grants to “develop existing privacy research capacity in academic and not-for-profit sectors” aiming to improve public trust about how their personal information is used by charities.

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