ICO Blog: Supporting UK democracy through data protection with new political campaigning guidance

Mar 9th '21

A blog from Elizabeth Denham, Information Commissioner.


In a year where the challenges of the pandemic have prompted digital innovation in so many aspects of our lives, it is no surprise that campaigning for the upcoming elections in England, Scotland and Wales will be a little different.


Electoral Commission data has already shown a rapid acceleration in the use of digital political advertising over the past five years. The limitations on traditional door-to-door canvassing and static advertising due to the pandemic will make technological approaches even more essential this time around.


There are clear benefits to society from a hybrid online/offline approach to campaigning, creating opportunities for campaigners and the electorate. It allows political parties to keep in touch with people efficiently, promotes more informed voting decisions, and facilitates better engagement with hard to reach groups. All of this contributes to the potential for increased engagement in democratic processes.


The ICO [Information Commissioner’s Office] has a role where people’s information is being used to support campaigning, for instance around profiling voters for targeted digital advertising […] read more


Source: ICO