The ICO exists to empower you through information.

Through understanding our current state, and the role that we want data to play in the ICO in the future, we were able to centre on a vision and set of guiding principles.

Our vision is:

“The ICO will be an exemplar of responsible innovation using data. Data and insight will maximise our impact, guide all our work and accelerate our transformation.”

We believe this vision aligns well with the ICO’s wider purpose to “empower you through information”.

In order to deliver this, we recognised the need to set some principles to guide our actions and behaviours, building a strong and sustainable data culture. These principles tackle critical challenges and outline important aspects of our approach that match our ambitious vision.

The four principles are:

  • We democratise

Data is everyone’s job. We share data internally and externally, appropriately. We invest in data literacy for all our people, and in creating rewarding careers for our data professionals.

  • We dignify

Our use of data doesn't take agency and control from people. It empowers them to do their best and most valuable work, freeing them up from the routine through intelligent automation. It shapes how we understand and serve our customers.

  • We're disciplined

We put the effort in to make sure our data is high quality, structured and available. We seek out data and insights to inform critical decisions from the get-go. We apply sensible mitigations to data risks.

  • We're daring

We innovate with data, challenging our in-built tendency to take the safest path. Data + creativity = unexpected magic.


The strategy also set three overarching goals:

  • To deliver tangible value from data for the ICO and its customers
  • To improve the employee experience of our data capabilities
  • To measurably grow our data maturity

These goals will be quantified and measured against a balanced scorecard, developed as part of the implementation plan.