The number of complaints filed to the UK’s data protection regulator has doubled since the General Data Protection Regulation was implemented in May 2018. According to figures from law firm EMW which reveal the number of complaints to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) between 25 May and 3 July this year climbed to 6,281 versus just 2,417 during the same period last year.

An ICO spokesperson said: “It’s early days and we will collate, analyze and publish official statistics in due course. But generally, as anticipated, we have seen a rise in personal data breach reports from organizations. Complaints relating to data protection issues are also up and, as more people become aware of their individual rights, we are expecting the number of complaints to the ICO to increase too.”

The law firm pinned the increase on individuals having more awareness of their data rights, as well as companies being forced to report their own data breaches.

Accordingly, to The Guardian in Austria, more than 100 complaints have been filed in July, along with 59 breach notifications – the same number that would typically be received in eight months.

A significant amount of complaints have been filed against giant companies. Facebook and Google have already been the subject of complaints filed by privacy campaigners and consumer rights group,

For firms across Europe, complying with GDPR is critical. Risking fines of minimum 10 million euros or 2% of a company’s annual turnover is a significant threat and as such is forcing companies to move toward greater transparency and openness with authorities and consumers.

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