Practice recommendations by the Commissioner

The request was successful.

Dear Information Commissioner’s Office,

You have disclosed that:

"There are over one hundred thousand public authorities who are subject to the FOIA."

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/i...

In dealing with delinquent public authorities the following is relevant:

"94. The Commissioner has the power to issue a practice recommendation under section 48 of FOIA if he considers that a public authority is not conforming to the code. This will include steps he thinks the organisation should follow in order to meet the code’s requirements."

https://ico.org.uk/media/for-organisatio...

1. How many practice recommendations has the Commissioner issued in the past 12 months and to whom were they issued?

2. If steps are taken to check whether practice recommendations have been implemented by the public authorities concerned, please provide details of the general process.

In cases where a public authority persists in its delinquency the following is relevant:

"96. Failure to follow a practice recommendation could lead to a failure to comply with FOIA or the EIR, or could lead to an adverse comment in the Commissioner’s report to Parliament."

3. How many public authorities issued with a practice recommendation in the past 12 months have been adjudged to have failed to comply with FOIA or the EIR.

Yours faithfully,

J Roberts

AccessICOinformation, Information Commissioner’s Office

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Jt Oakley left an annotation ()

One gov agency has put my personal information on the internet four times .
And I do mean personal!

The ICO gave a mild warning after two breaches of the FOIA .

The organisation just carried on adding more personal info ( removed by WDTK -thanks WDTK) -then nothing.

The ICO only seems interested in fining companies etc.

Because thats money in.

And government agencies, know that the ICO will do next to nothing.

So the ICO can now be safely ignored.

J Roberts left an annotation ()

JT Oakley,

I must admit that I do not know what the ICO does to a public authority that breeches the FOIA Act by repeatedly publishing someone's personal information without the person's consent. Maybe it depends on whether the public authority continued to publish the information after it was asked not to? In your case, was your information published four times before you became aware that it was published or were you made aware of the breech after the first time it happened? Did the public authority continue to publish your information after being asked not to?

Jt Oakley left an annotation ()

Two personal data breaches before I complained to ICO.

One might of been a mistake but two seemed deliberate (- after a warning from me, after the first breach) .

ICO made a few noises.

:::

Then two more breaches ( !)

So I reported two more.

I'm still waiting to hear from the ICO on those two.

But given up - as I don't think ICO want to do anything about it as it is a Public Authority ....as no fines to be levied.

:::::

Then suddenly the requested organisation gave me the withheld information - for which I'd been asking.

Nb It was a long and tortuous business to get to that point - because I knew the requested information existed
(- 1 tip off, 1 steer from a friend lawyer ) .......so I wasn't going to give up.

:::

Then my FOIA request was declared vexatious by the ICO as it was 'frivolous' - but AFTER the organisation had given me the formerly withheld information, for which I was stated to be asking 'frivolously'.

:::

IMO I think nobody bothered to check that I had received the witheld information - before declaring that my request was I was frivolous - i.e. As decision seems to imply that information did NOT exist - and I was just being making a request to annoy the organisation.

:::

Wrote and told the ICO that I didn't understand why the request was declared frivolous - vexatious, given that I'd got the information -of which there was no mention in the vexation. Didn't the caseworker know I'd got it?
Puzzled to know how it could still be a frivolous request.

It was a nice letter, as I thought that this organisation had not informed the ICO that it had FINALLY produced the witheld information.

So I just wanted the ICO to put the record straight on the frivolous accusation. Although I think the caseworker should have checked the request ( which is on WDTK ) - before issuing the 'frivolous' accusation. Surely no one reading the outcome of the request could come to the conclusion reached?

- Whether the ICO did anything about the withholding breach was up to the ICO.

All I wanted was the requested witheld information ....which I now had.

:::

But you know how it is - if the ICO makes a mistake and you complain, it goes to the caseworker's boss to decide whether one of his/her team has made a mistake.

So no - the ICO won't retract the 'frivolity' description..... even though I sent them a copy the missing witheld procedures information. And I'm banned from contacting the organisation which put my personal data in the internet ....and witheld the requested information.

:::
IMO -Any organisation which operates a complaint system which basically asks a manager to decide a complaint about his/her team member isn't running a fair system.

That's what the PHSO used to do - and why it had to pay me £500 and give me a formal apology for ignoring the points raised. I hope it's better now. But this seems to be a duplicate of that situation.
::

Btw -There was a simple reason for witholding the requested information.

- According to others more knowing about the requested information - the organisation has not been following its own procedures. And therefore made their cases against it stronger. I've been thanked a couple of times for getting it.

.......So not so 'frivolous' after all.

J Roberts left an annotation ()

Jt Oakley,

Thanks for the informative annotation. It appears that little more happens to complaints such as yours other than their conversion to statistics in some ICO file. It would be interesting to know, however, whether the statistics make it into an ICO report available to the public. Aberrant public authorities and the extent of their failings might be identified.

Information Commissioner’s Office

20 March 2017

 

Case Reference Number IRQ0669872

 

Dear J Roberts

Information request
 
I write in response to your email of 27 February 2017 in which you
submitted a request for information to the Information Commissioner’s
Office (ICO). Your request has been dealt with in accordance with the
Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA).
 
Your request
 
“1. How many practice recommendations has the Commissioner issued in the
past 12 months and to whom were they issued?

2. If steps are taken to check whether practice recommendations have been
implemented by the public authorities concerned, please provide details of
the general process.

In cases where a public authority persists in its delinquency the
following is relevant:

"96. Failure to follow a practice recommendation could lead to a failure
to comply with FOIA or the EIR, or could lead to an adverse comment in the
Commissioner?s report to Parliament."

3. How many public authorities issued with a practice recommendation in
the past 12 months have been adjudged to have failed to comply with FOIA
or the EIR.”
 
Our response
 
I can confirm that no practice recommendations have been issued in the
past 12 months, therefore the answer to parts one and three of your
request is 0.
 
It may be helpful to explain that, in most instances, if a section 45 or
section 46 issue is identified when we are dealing with the FOI complaints
we receive, we will usually address it in the course of our investigation
or in a decision notice if one is issued.
 
In respect of part two of your request, general information regarding
procedures around practice recommendations can be found in our freedom of
information regulatory policy:
[1]https://ico.org.uk/media/about-the-ico/p...

You may also wish to view copies of practice recommendations we have
previously published, and these can be found on the National Archives
‘instances’ of our website, for instance here:
[2]http://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.u...
 
This concludes our response to your request. I hope the information
provided is helpful.       
 
Review Procedure

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with correctly, please write to the Information Access Team at the address
below, reply directly to this email (with the reference number contained
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IRQ0669872.

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Concern’ section of our website.

A copy of our review procedure is available here
[4]https://ico.org.uk/media/about-the-ico/p...
 
Yours sincerely

Ian Goddard
Lead Information Access Officer
Information Commissioner’s Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow,
Cheshire SK9 5AF
T. 01625 545823  F. 01625 524510  [5]ico.org.uk  [6]twitter.com/iconews
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J Roberts left an annotation ()

Over 100,000 bodies subject to the FOIA but not one practice recommendation under section 48 of FOIA in the past 12 months. I thought there would be at least one.

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