The UK’s independent authority set up to uphold information rights in the public interest, promoting openness by public bodies and data privacy for individuals.

What we cover

What we cover

Our role and responsibilities

The ICO’s mission is to uphold information rights in the public interest. We give guidance to citizens and organisations, rule on eligible complaints, and take appropriate action when the law is broken. Find out more about our responsibilities under the legislation we cover.



Read the full text of the Data Protection Act 1998, the Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations 2003, the Freedom of Information Act 2000, the Environmental Information Regulations 2004, and the INSPIRE Regulations 2009.

Taking action

Read about what we can do, and policies and codes of practice about our enforcement activity.

Register of data controllers

The ICO maintains the public register of data controllers, which includes names and addresses of data controllers and a description of the kind of processing they do.

Audits, advisory visits and self assessments

The ICO works with organisations to improve their processing of personal data through audits, arranging advisory visits, a self assessment questionnaire and data protection workshops. Read summaries of these reports.

Handling concerns and complaints

Each year we receive tens of thousands of enquiries, written concerns and complaints. Read about how we deal with them, including case stories.

Monitoring compliance

The ICO monitors and issues reports about the timeliness of organisations responding to freedom of information requests as well as the adoption and operation of the model publication scheme across the public sector.

International duties

In addition to UK responsibilities, the ICO has an international role including our cooperation with similar organisations in Europe, the European Commission and other countries.