London ‘needs data sharing alliance’

Official from capital’s fire brigade calls for the creation of a platform to support data governance by the capital’s public authorities

A call has gone out for the creation of a Pan-London Information Sharing Alliance and central platform as a response to the forthcoming implementation of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) next year.

Tower Bridge and City Hall at nightAndrew Mobbs, business intelligence manager at the London Fire Brigade, proposed the initiative, named Datashare London, through the Greater London Authority’s (GLA) London Datastore.

He said that the GDPR will raise the bar for compliance with data protection regulations, and that an alliance could provide a central store of resources to support authorities that want to share data within the law.

This could include an agreed set of practical templates and processes to support data governance, along with a repository of data sharing protocols, information sharing agreements, privacy impact assessments and other documentation that the public could view.

It could also provide a platform for personal data to be securely uploaded and accesses with the appropriate security, logging and tracking – possibly giving individuals access to their own data.

Four-stage plan

The initiative would involve four phases, only moving from one to the next if it had appropriate support.

The first would be building a centralised repository using the technology being developed for the GLA’s City Datastore; followed by the creation of an agreed set of data sharing templates to comply with all information governance principles.

Third would come the building of a common data sharing platform, with full audit, logging and notification processes; and fourth a move to provide the public with access to their own records.

Mobbs said there are precedents in the form of the Whole of Essex Information Sharing Framework and Lancashire and Cumbria’s Information Sharing Gateway, the latter of which hosts 669 data sharing agreements from more than 1,000 organisations. He acknowledged that London’s governance structure is different, but said it is not so much so that it would prevent an agreement.

He invited anyone interested to contact him.

Image by Dun.can, CC BY 2.0 through flickr