We wrote to the Information Commissioner to request an urgent investigation into the way rape victims’ personal data is accessed and handled by the police and the Crown Prosecution Service.
Police and the CPS can access rape victims’ mobile phones and all of the information it contains, as well as personal records including medical records, counselling records and school records. Police are also trialling the sue of artificial intelligence systems to analyse this vast amount of victims’ personal and sensitive information. Victims are also being coerced into signing away their privacy rights under blanket ‘consent’ forms.
Director Silkie Carlo said:
“At a time when more women and men than ever are pursuing justice against sex offenders, the justice system is letting them down.
“Victims of any other type of crime are not asked to put their private lives on trial – reserving that approach for victims of sexual assaults is antiquated and wrong.
“These digital interrogations obstruct justice, deny victims their basic rights, and swamp police in masses of irrelevant data they cannot handle. We urge the ICO to investigate this issue as a matter of priority.”
Read the Independent piece: Information Commissioner called to investigate ‘antiquated and wrong’ demands for rape victims’ records
Our full letter to the ICO is available here.