What is the GDPR Right of Access to Personal Data?

The new General Data Protection Regulations come into effect in the last week of May. These guidelines are aimed at protecting the rights of EU citizens. Businesses that employ, or do business with, EU citizens must comply with these regulations or face stiff penalties.

One of the rights ensured to European Union citizens under GDPR is their right to access personal data. In addition to having access to their personal data file, EU citizens also have a right to see any supplementary information attached to this data.

This right to access means individuals must be made aware of what is in their personal file. They also have an opportunity to verify the legalities of the processing of this information.

Information Individuals are entitled to under the GDPR

Under the GDPR right to access individuals may obtain:

  • Confirmation that the data in their personal file is being collected, used, and stored
  • They must be allowed access this file and whatever supplementary data outlined in Articled 15
  • This clause guarantees individual’s awareness of what is in the file, how it is being collected, used, and stored

Businesses collecting this data must allow access and cannot charge for providing this service. If additional copies are requested a reasonable fee may be charged for this.

This information must be provided within a month after a formal request has been received.

If requests for right to access are deemed excessive, unfounded or unusually frequent, the business may charge a reasonable fee for providing it. If the business collecting the data refuses to provide it, a logical explanation must be provided.

Electronic requests will have information provided electronically.

If there is a large amount of data, the firm or organization providing the information may ask for specification of which information is being requested.