Privacy Seals – A way to gaining consumer trust?

The ICO’s plans for a consumer facing privacy seal for UK businesses have taken a significant step forward.

Encouraged by the level of interest from organisations from across a range of sectors, and from potential scheme operators, the ICO has started work on a legal framework for working with potential scheme operators. The ICO have also launched an invitation to tender for a marketing strategy and creation of the logo representing the privacy seal.   

It is envisaged that the privacy seal proposal would involve a trademarked logo that each scheme operator would, once accredited by the UK Accreditation Service, award to organisations meeting their criteria, thus allowing accredited organisations to display the seal. 

The purpose of the scheme is to give consumers an easy way of identifying those organisations meeting the highest data protection standards. 

Draft EU Data Protection reforms, the details of which are expected to be finalised at the end of 2015, clearly support the concept of privacy seal schemes.  In a climate of increasing consumer concerns over the use and security of their personal data, it has perhaps never been more important to look at ways of increasing or maintaining consumer trust in this respect.  Once the scheme is in place, accreditation might go a long way towards achieving this. 

This information is intended as a general discussion surrounding the topics covered and is for guidance purposes only. It does not constitute legal advice and should not be regarded as a substitute for taking legal advice. DWF is not responsible for any activity undertaken based on this information.

Elaine Fletcher


I specialise in data protection and freedom of information law. I believe that compliance done well is a business facilitator not a blocker, and that privacy by design brings commercial benefits.