Data Protection Commission statement on funding in 2021 Budget

13th October 2020

The Data Protection Commission (DPC) has today welcomed the allocation of €19.1 million in funding to the office, as announced by the Government in Budget 2021, an increase to the €16.9 million that was allocated for 2020.

In welcoming the allocation, the Commissioner for Data Protection, Helen Dixon, stated that “The DPC is at the front line of EU data protection regulation and the increased funding announced today, in what are very difficult economic times, is vital for the DPC to continue to build its capacity as an internationally respected and effective supervisory authority. We very much welcome the fact that the Government has listened and understood the need to adequately resource regulation in this area.”

The introduction of the GDPR in May 2018 has given rise to a significant increase in work volumes in the DPC. During that time the DPC has handled more than 85,000 contacts to its offices and received more than 16,000 complaints, 14,000 breach notifications and over 3,000 requests for guidance from private, public and voluntary organisations. That trend is expected to continue in 2021.

“2021 promises to be another extremely busy year at the DPC. Individuals rely on services of the regulator to assist where they have been unable to exercise their rights with organisations. In addition, as a regulator, the DPC must intervene in areas of systemic risk to the data protection rights of the public and we will continue to progress and finalise the statutory inquiries that we have open. The funding allocated for 2021 will also allow us to continue with key strategic projects, such as the completion of a new Case Management System and further development of our ICT infrastructure,” commented Helen Dixon.

Increases in the funding allocated to the DPC in recent years have facilitated the significant expansion of the DPC’s staffing, with an emphasis on strengthening the regulator’s skills-base in the areas of legal, technology, investigations and communications bringing staffing levels to 150 at present. The funding increase for 2021 will allow the DPC to further expand its resources.