UK failed to protect privacy of lifelong activist whose personal data appeared in an extremism database


Re: Catt v UK (App No. 43514/15)

This case considered the collection and retention of the personal data of the applicant, a lifelong peace activist, in the police database for ‘domestic extremists’. The Court considered that, although the collection of the information was justified, the retention of it was not. This was particularly due to the lack of adequate safeguards to permit maintaining sensitive information about political views on a database, such as time limits. As such, the Court concluded that the UK had failed to protect the privacy of the applicant and therefore had acted in violation of ECHR, art 8.

Dan Squires QC was involved in this case.