Big data is a major topic of discussion across a number of fields, including management and marketing, scientific research, national security, government transparency and open data. Both public and private sectors are making increasing use of big data analytics. The ICO is interested specifically in the data protection and privacy risks posed by big data.

This is an area in which the capabilities of the technology and the range of potential applications are evolving rapidly and there is ongoing discussion of the implications of big data. Our aim is to ensure that the different privacy risks of big data are considered along with the benefits of big data.

It is our belief that the emerging benefits of big data will be sustained by upholding key data protection principles and safeguards.