Why does the DPDI matter?

The words ‘Why does the DPDI matter?’ overlaid on a lightly-blurred image of the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben. Decorative: the word ‘DPDI’ is in yellow, while other words are in white. The ITPro podcast logo is in the bottom right corner.
(Image credit: Future / Unsplash - Marcin Nowak)

The UK’s data privacy landscape has long come with strict responsibilities for businesses, requiring detailed justifications for all customer data stored and processed. After the UK formally exited the European Union in 2020, the UK retained regulations for controllers and processors via the UK GDPR which sits alongside the Data Protection Act 2018.

Businesses have often criticized the red tape present within GDPR, arguing that it holds them back from carrying out the core functions of their business model. In response, the UK government has repeatedly backed the creation of a bill that would reform to UK data protection law and while this has been subject to some false starts, it is now underway as the Data Protection and Digital Information (DPDI) Bill.

In this episode, Jane and Rory speak to Chris Combemale, CEO at the Data and Marketing Association and chair of the Government’s Business Advisory Group on reforms, to learn how the DPDI could improve UK innovation and where it differs from other laws.


“Quite a bit of [the DPDI] is clarification and pragmatic, common sense reforms that should enable growth and innovation while at the same time maintaining the high levels and core principles of data privacy and protection that we are used to, and that actually sit at the heart of building trust in the data-driven and digital economy.”

“It's really important that companies do know what data they're collecting and why. But if you're a small business with 5, 10,15-20 employees, you're usually doing small-scale data processing, which has very little potential to create harm. And that's where the government has drawn a clear line that's pragmatic and sensible for those SMEs.”

“[T]he government has been very careful to ensure not to create a two-tier economy, where the big research universities, the big scientific research companies, the big medical companies, have an unfair advantage. So they've made it clear that the changes, or the evolution of the regime for scientific research, covers research in a commercial setting.”



Rory Bathgate
Features and Multimedia Editor

Rory Bathgate is Features and Multimedia Editor at ITPro, overseeing all in-depth content and case studies. He can also be found co-hosting the ITPro Podcast with Jane McCallion, swapping a keyboard for a microphone to discuss the latest learnings with thought leaders from across the tech sector.

In his free time, Rory enjoys photography, video editing, and good science fiction. After graduating from the University of Kent with a BA in English and American Literature, Rory undertook an MA in Eighteenth-Century Studies at King’s College London. He joined ITPro in 2022 as a graduate, following four years in student journalism. You can contact Rory at rory.bathgate@futurenet.com or on LinkedIn.