For the public

For the public

Providing you with the information you need

The ICO is here to help you understand what the Data Protection Act, Freedom of Information Act and related issues mean to you. We can advise you on how to protect your personal information and how to gain access to official records.


Need guidance on a specific issue? Click on a topic from the list on the right to view the guide.

Personal information

You are entitled to see information held about you. Find out how to manage your personal information including subject access requests, compensation and what you can expect from organisations.

Official information

You are entitled to request official information held by public authorities, including government departments, local authorities, hospitals, schools and police forces. Find out what you need to do.

What do the Acts mean to me?

What are the Data Protection Act, Freedom of Information Act, Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations and Environmental Information Regulations? What are the differences between them?


Can't find what you're looking for? Our FAQs might help.






Useful items

  • News and events

    Find out the latest news on data protection and freedom of information.

  • Complaints

    If you feel your rights have been infringed, we may be able to help you make an official complaint.

  • Keeping the public register of data controllers

    The ICO maintains the public register of data controllers, which includes names and addresses of data controllers and a description of the kind of processing they do.