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The Data Protection Act

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The Data Protection Act (1998) The 1998 Data Protection Act was introduced to control the way information is handled and to give rights to people who have information stored about them. It was introduced due to a number of reasons. Towards the end of the 20th century, computers were getting more and more powerful and government and companies began to use them with databases to store large amounts of information about people, such as their customers and staff. Computers were being used instead of paper to keep personal data about people (i.e. contact details). Also, it became easy to access information due to the ease of databases. Also as more and more companies used computers to store personal information, there was a risk that the information could be misused in the wring hands. The main principals of the Act are that data must be: * processed fairly and lawfully * used for the lawful purpose it was collected for * data must be relevant to purpose collected for * kept accurate and up-to-date * ...read more.


As I am still a minor (less than 18 years of age) I would be able to do very little to protect my information from falling into the wrong hands. The only case in which my school or bank can share information about me is for legal reason with police needing information. However, as I am still a minor, they would have to inform my parents on any actions they take in regards to sharing my personal details. How the Data Protection Act affects an adult at work This Act also affects an adult at work. For example, it helps an adult at work; a blind person. At work, an adult at work's employers hold personal information about her such as medical records (in case of an accident). The Data Protection Act ensures that an adult at work's employers do not have the right to share any of her personal information with anyone else without her permission or by command of the law. ...read more.


banks and Health Centres). As a result of the Data Protection Act, all of this information such as medical and financial records about people cannot be shared with a third-party. This therefore enforces and protects people's privacy, and reassures the community that their personal information is safe. Evaluation The Data Protection Act is very useful because as a result of this Act, everyone feels safer and reassured that their personal data will be treated appropriately and not be misused. However this has been recently contradicted with the fact that has been found out that Britain is the most watched country in the world. Britain contains an enormous 20% of all the world CCTV cameras. People now believe that their privacy is not being respected, and is able to be misused. Although CCTV cameras also can also reassure the public, in that they are safe physically. Furthermore, supermarkets now are able to hold information about our shopping patterns due to the growth of point-cards and can use this information to adjust stocks. However this may not be well-known and can be thought of as misusing personal information. ...read more.

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In summary, I would grade the report as a 'Merit'. This is the second highest level in ICT. The report explains the Data Protection Act and explains how this effects different people in three different environments. For an Distinction, the ...

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Response to the question

In summary, I would grade the report as a 'Merit'. This is the second highest level in ICT. The report explains the Data Protection Act and explains how this effects different people in three different environments. For an Distinction, the student would need to link the eight key points of the Data Protection Act to how it effects people. As some of the areas will apply more to one group, rather than another. The report states 'to control the way information is handled', however this is in-correct. The law is based upon how DATA is controlled and used, and not information. This is an important difference, as this may suggest that the student isn't aware of the law. The report continues to state 'information' instead of 'data', and this isn't just one mistake. The student should replace 'information' to the correct term of 'data. The report as it is, will only be granted upto an Merit due to the error.

Level of analysis

The report states the eight different sets of laws which are under the 'Data Protection Act'. However the report only lists these eight points. For a distinction, the student would need to briefly explain what each of these points mean for website owners and how there could implement changes to remain by the law. The student explains how the Data Protection Act is enforced on a number of parties, such as the student, work place and the communication. However on all these three sections, the report doesn't state any direct examples of the misuse of data and how this can effect the victim. As if data can be misused this could cause an dramatic effect on one person, as this could damage their way of living, due to the shear amount of data people store in today society.

Quality of writing

On a small number of sentences it's quite broken English, and when reading though it doesn't make sense. The student would need to re-though and just re-write some of the content to ensure it's easily readable throughout all of the report.

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Reviewed by danielbeal 19/02/2012

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