DCENR Case Study

The Irish government introduced a national system of postcodes (known as ‘Eircodes’) and initiated a programme to allocate a unique, non-sequential Eircode to each address point in Ireland.

Client: Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources (DCENR)

Title: Privacy Impact Assessment – National Postcodes Project

Our Service: Consultancy

The Challenge

The Irish government introduced a national system of postcodes (known as ‘Eircodes’) and initiated a programme to allocate a unique, non-sequential Eircode to each address point in Ireland. The responsible government department, the DCENR commissioned Gemserv to undertake a Privacy Impact Assessment (PIA) to address concerns around citizens’ privacy.

Our Approach

We set out a number of stages to conduct the PIA. The first stage was conducted primarily by means of a desktop review of documents provided by the DCENR. Interviews were then carried out with selected groups of stakeholders who were closely associated with the project.

The second stage involved the completion of a PIA questionnaire, which led to the production of a report linking the assessment to Data Protection Principles.

The last stage was for Gemserv to undertake an assessment of the strategic privacy issues, the extent to which they are capable of causing harm to individuals, and the effect they may have on the prospects for the programme’s success.

The Outcome

Our PIA provided DCENR with a full assessment and report of the findings, and the recommendations for mitigating the identified risks. We advised that the precautionary approach would be to treat the data as personal data, and as a result, the Communications Regulation (Postal Services) (Amendment) Bill 2015 was brought forward and subsequently approved in June 2015, to ensure there is sufficient legal basis on which to process Eircodes.

The DCENR were then in a position to facilitate the project’s progression while minimising the risk of legal or regulatory challenge to it from a data protection perspective.

Share this...

Share on email
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on facebook

Find out

More

Every day our teams of experts are analysing information like this, providing high-level need to know reports for our clients so they can continue to stay ahead and lead their industries.

Get an unfair advantage – subscribe to our mailing list by filling out the form opposite. You can find out how we look after your data in our Data Policy.

About the Authors

Following the most recent government guidance, we are asking all but essential staff to work remotely. Consequently, for the time being, we will no longer be hosting meetings at our London and Dublin offices, though we will continue to provide our services as normal.

Visit our Coronavirus Information page for full details of the procedures we are adhering to and who to contact if you have any questions.

We are in unprecedented times and businesses are needing to adapt faster than ever to an ever changing situation. But what does that mean in practice and what does that mean for employees?

We are launching a series of live podcasts with some of our team whose backgrounds are in IT, Security, Business Resilience and Digital Transformation. They will discuss advice and guidance for companies in the process of adapting to unprecedented changes in the way we work and live.

Following the most recent government guidance, we are asking all but essential staff to work remotely. Consequently, for the time being, we will no longer be hosting meetings at our London and Dublin offices, though we will continue to provide our services as normal.

Visit our Coronavirus Information page for full details of the procedures we are adhering to and who to contact if you have any questions.