The ICO exists to empower you through information.

High Priority Inquiries (HPI) and High Priority Policy Projects

In High Priority Inquiries (HPI) and High Priority Policy Projects we focus on particularly novel or intrusive information rights issues that may present the greatest risk to the public. We focus on investigations, projects, initiatives and issues that have a significant impact on information rights. We are particularly interested in rapid technological advancements that may pose challenges to data protection and privacy.

We often work on complex, long-standing pieces of work that require a cross-office approach. 

Insight and Intelligence 

We are responsible for collecting, analysing, assessing, evaluating and disseminating intelligence obtained from sources inside and outside the ICO to support the delivery of the ICO’s strategic objectives. We ensure intelligence plays a central and strategic role throughout the ICO and is used effectively to guide tactical and strategic decisions.


As intelligence professionals we produce a range of products to inform wider ICO work, applying processes based on the National Intelligence Model alongside our own prioritisation framework and risk assessment models.

We produce an annual strategic assessment that identifies information rights themes and opportunities, where we can have an impact. This assessment helps identify and set the regulatory priorities for the whole office.

We produce intelligence briefings and problem profiles, with recommended next steps. These may be commissioned to support an existing investigation or to provide more thorough analysis of the intelligence. 


The Insight team is part of the Intelligence Department. Our role is to improve information rights practice by publishing insight gleaned from the data we use in the course of our regulatory work. We acquire data from a variety of internal and external sources and analyse it to uncover trends, correlations or other themes.

The Development and Co-ordination Unit (DCU) focuses on the development, coordination and allocation of our discretionary work, ensuring our work is properly tasked and coordinated.

The Relationship Management Service (RMS) ensures we coordinate our engagement with key stakeholders, across priority sectors so that:

  • we have a coordinated approach to stakeholder engagement, with everyone across the office working together to achieve shared goals; and
  • stakeholders are able to engage effectively with the ICO, with a clear understanding of how we will engage with them, what we will do to support them, and what we expect from them in return.

Development and Co-ordination Unit (DCU) and Relationship Management (RMS)

DCU is a new department that will work across the office to triage incoming requests for new work. We will prioritise these requests, coordinate the development of proposals for action and make recommendations for what activity, if any the ICO should undertake.

RMS leads and coordinates our stakeholder engagement with key sectors.