Smart Data Consultation: call for input to the SCL response

July 10, 2019

In 2018 the Government announced a review of Smart Data in a Green Paper on Modernising Consumer Markets. That Review concluded that there is considerable potential for Smart Data to open up competition (particularly in regulated markets such a utility providers), help vulnerable customers and enhance data protection and so the Government is now consulting on the proposals arising from the review process review.

SCL would like to respond to the consultation by gathering the views of its members via an online questionnaire here. This is a very important piece of legislation and therefore we want the SCL response to be as representative of the views of the SCL membership as possible. 

A Summary of the Proposals

The consultation paper (available in full here) sets them out under three broad themes as summarised below:

1. Accelerating the development of innovative data-driven services in consumer markets: This could be achieved by

  • creating a “cross-sectoral Smart Data Function to oversee the delivery of smart data initiatives across multiple markets”. The consultation paper hints that this could be a new body or an existing agency
  • introducing an Open Communications initiative that would require communications businesses to provide consumers’ data to third party providers at the consumer’s request
  • further consultation as part of a broader Competition Green Paper, on extending Smart Data to digital markets in our response to the recommendations of the Digital Competition Expert Panel, which is reporting separately to the Business Secretary.

2. Using data and technology to help vulnerable consumers:

  • encouraging innovation to improve outcomes for vulnerable consumers through a Vulnerable Consumer Challenge: the form of this challenge is vague but the hope is to bring together stakeholders together to share best practice
  • Placing the needs of vulnerable consumers at the centre of Smart Data initiatives and the new Smart Data Function
  • Exploring ways regulators can utilise consumer data, subject to the right protections, to support vulnerable consumers

3. Ensuring consumers and their data are protected through:

  • The introduction of strong data protection requirements on Third Party Providers accessing consumer data so that data obtained under a Smart Data initiative, and which is restricted to accredited TPPs, can only be shared with non-accredited TPPs for approved purposes
  • a cross-sectoral accreditation process for TPPs so that the burden on providers is minimised

How to help

The SCL questionnaire will be online until 5 pm on Tuesday 30 July 2019. Your responses will be used to write up the SCL response based on the contribution to this questionnaire submitted in time for the deadline on 6 August 2019.

We will publish the response on these pages when it is ready.

Click here to complete the survey.