Digital Economy Bill (HC Bill 45)

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(c) contravenes directly applicable EU legislation or any enactment
to the extent that it implements EU legislation.

(10) This section does not limit the circumstances in which information may
be disclosed apart from this section.”

(3) 5Omit—

(a) section 47 (power to authorise disclosure to the Board);

(b) section 48 (power to authorise disclosure to the Board: Scotland);

(c) section 49 (power to authorise disclosure to the Board: Northern
Ireland).

(4) 10In section 54 (Data Protection Act 1998 and Human Rights Act 1998) for “47”
substitute “50”.

(5) In section 65 (orders and regulations)—

(a) in subsection (4) omit “47(11),”,

(b) in subsection (5)(b) omit “47,”,

(c) 15in subsection (6)(b) omit “48 or”, and

(d) in subsection (9)(c) omit “49 or”.

(6) In section 67 (general interpretation) for the definition of “enactment”
substitute—

  • ““enactment” includes—

    (a)

    20an enactment contained in subordinate legislation
    within the meaning of the Interpretation Act 1978;

    (b)

    an enactment contained in, or in an instrument made
    under, an Act of the Scottish Parliament;

    (c)

    an enactment contained in, or in an instrument made
    25under, a Measure or Act of the National Assembly for
    Wales;

    (d)

    an enactment contained in, or in an instrument made
    under, Northern Ireland legislation;”.

67 Access to information by Statistics Board

30After section 45A of the Statistics and Registration Service Act 2007  (inserted
by section 66) insert—

45B Access to information held by Crown bodies etc

(1) This section applies to—

(a) a public authority which is an emanation of the Crown or a
35servant or agent of the Crown,

(b) the Bank of England (including in the exercise of its functions as
the Prudential Regulation Authority),

(c) the Financial Conduct Authority, and

(d) the Payment Systems Regulator established under section 40 of
40the Financial Services (Banking Reform) Act 2013.

(2) Subject to this section and section 45E, the Board has a right of access to
information which—

(a) is held by a public authority to which this section applies in
connection with its functions, and

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(b) is required by the Board to enable it to exercise one or more of
its functions.

(3) Subsection (2) does not apply to information if the disclosure of that
information—

(a) 5would contravene the Data Protection Act 1998,

(b) would be prohibited by Part 1 of the Regulation of Investigatory
Powers Act 2000, or

(c) would contravene directly applicable EU legislation or any
enactment to the extent that it implements EU legislation.

(4) 10The right of access in subsection (2) is to be exercised in accordance
with the following provisions of this section.

(5) The Board may, by notice in writing to the public authority, request the
authority to disclose the information to the Board.

(6) A notice under subsection (5) must—

(a) 15set out the Board’s reasons for requesting the information to be
disclosed, and

(b) specify the date by which or the period within which the public
authority must respond to the request.

(7) The public authority must, by that date or within that period, provide
20a response in writing to the Board which—

(a) indicates that it is willing to provide the information and gives
the date by which it will be provided, or

(b) indicates that it is not willing to provide the information and
gives reasons for not providing it.

(8) 25Subsection (9) applies if—

(a) the public authority fails to respond to the request in
accordance with subsection (7),

(b) the public authority indicates that it is not willing to provide the
information requested, or

(c) 30the public authority has indicated that it is willing to provide
the information requested, but the Board considers that the
public authority is failing to take reasonable steps to comply
with that request.

(9) The Board may lay the request and any response by the public
35authority before the relevant legislature.

(10) In subsection (9) “the relevant legislature” means Parliament, subject as
follows.

(11) The Scottish Parliament is the relevant legislature if—

(a) the public authority exercises functions only as regards
40Scotland, and

(b) its functions are wholly or mainly functions which do not relate
to reserved matters (within the meaning of the Scotland Act
1998).

(12) The National Assembly for Wales is the relevant legislature if—

(a) 45the public authority exercises functions only as regards Wales,
and

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(b) its functions are wholly or mainly functions which could be
conferred on the authority by provision which falls within the
legislative competence of the National Assembly for Wales.

(13) The Northern Ireland Assembly is the relevant legislature if—

(a) 5the public authority exercises functions only as regards
Northern Ireland, and

(b) its functions are wholly or mainly functions which relate to
transferred matters (within the meaning of the Northern Ireland
Act 1998).

(14) 10This section does not apply to—

(a) Her Majesty in Her private capacity,

(b) Her Majesty in right of the Duchy of Lancaster, or

(c) the Duke of Cornwall.

45C Power to require disclosures by other public authorities

(1) 15This section applies to a public authority to which section 45B does not
apply (other than one within subsection (14) of that section).

(2) Subject to this section and section 45E, the Board may, by notice in
writing to a public authority to which this section applies, require the
authority to disclose to the Board information which—

(a) 20is held by the authority in connection with its functions, and

(b) is specified, or is of a kind specified, in the notice.

(3) A notice under subsection (2) may require information to be disclosed
on more than one date specified in the notice within a period specified
in the notice.

(4) 25A notice under subsection (2) other than one within subsection (3) must
specify the date by which or the period within which the information
must be disclosed.

(5) A notice under subsection (2) may specify the form or manner in which
the information to which it relates must be disclosed.

(6) 30A notice under subsection (2) may require the public authority to
consult the Board before making changes to—

(a) its processes for collecting, organising, storing or retrieving the
information to which the notice relates, or

(b) its processes for supplying such information to the Board.

(7) 35The reference in subsection (6) to making changes to a process includes
introducing or removing a process.

(8) The Board may give a notice under subsection (2) only if the Board
requires the information to which the notice relates to enable it to
exercise one or more of its functions.

(9) 40The Board must obtain the consent of the Scottish Ministers before
giving a notice under subsection (2) to a public authority if—

(a) the public authority exercises functions only as regards
Scotland, and

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(b) its functions are wholly or mainly functions which do not relate
to reserved matters (within the meaning of the Scotland Act
1998).

(10) The Board must obtain the consent of the Welsh Ministers before giving
5a notice under subsection (2) to a public authority if—

(a) the public authority exercises functions only as regards Wales,
and

(b) its functions are wholly or mainly functions which could be
conferred on the authority by provision which falls within the
10legislative competence of the National Assembly for Wales.

(11) The Board must obtain the consent of the Department of Finance in
Northern Ireland before giving a notice under subsection (2) to a public
authority if—

(a) the public authority exercises functions only as regards
15Northern Ireland, and

(b) its functions are wholly or mainly functions which relate to
transferred matters (within the meaning of the Northern Ireland
Act 1998).

(12) A public authority to which a notice under subsection (2) is given must
20comply with it.

(13) But the public authority need not comply with the notice if
compliance—

(a) might prejudice national security,

(b) would contravene the Data Protection Act 1998,

(c) 25would be prohibited by Part 1 of the Regulation of Investigatory
Powers Act 2000, or

(d) would contravene directly applicable EU legislation or any
enactment to the extent that it implements EU legislation.

45D Power to require disclosure by undertakings

(1) 30Subject to this section and section 45E, the Board may, by notice in
writing to an undertaking, require the undertaking to disclose to the
Board information which—

(a) is held by the undertaking, and

(b) is specified, or is of a kind specified, in the notice.

(2) 35A notice under subsection (1) may require information to be disclosed
on more than one date specified in the notice within a period specified
in the notice.

(3) A notice under subsection (1) other than one within subsection (2) must
specify the date by which or the period within which the information
40must be disclosed.

(4) A notice under subsection (1) may specify the form or manner in which
the information to which it relates must be disclosed.

(5) A notice under subsection (1) may require the undertaking to consult
the Board before making changes to—

(a) 45its processes for collecting, organising, storing or retrieving the
information to which the notice relates, or

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(b) its processes for supplying such information to the Board.

(6) The reference in subsection (5) to making changes to a process includes
introducing or removing a process.

(7) The Board may give a notice under subsection (1) only if the Board
5requires the information to which the notice relates to enable it to
exercise one or more of its functions.

(8) An undertaking to which a notice under subsection (1) is given must
comply with it.

(9) But the undertaking need not comply with the notice if compliance—

(a) 10might prejudice national security,

(b) would contravene the Data Protection Act 1998, or

(c) would be prohibited by Part 1 of the Regulation of Investigatory
Powers Act 2000.

(10) Subject to subsection (12), in this section “undertaking” means—

(a) 15any person carrying on a trade or business, whether or not with
a view to profit, or

(b) any charity.

(11) In subsection (10) “charity” means a body, or the trustees of a trust,
established for charitable purposes only.

(12) 20The following are not undertakings for the purposes of this section—

(a) a public authority;

(b) a micro business;

(c) a small business.

(13) Section 33 of the Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Act 2015
25(definitions of small and micro business) and regulations made under
that section apply in relation to subsection (12) as they apply in relation
to subordinate legislation within subsection (1) of that section.

45E Further provisions about powers in sections 45B, 45C and 45D

(1) Information disclosed under section 45B, 45C or 45D may only be used
30by the Board for the purposes of any one or more of its functions.

(2) Information disclosed under section 45B, 45C or 45D may not be used
by the Board for the purposes of its function under section 22 (statistical
services) except with the consent of the person who disclosed the
information.

(3) 35Where personal information is disclosed under section 45B, 45C or 45D,
the Board may not disclose the information to an approved researcher
under section 39(4)(i) except with the consent of the person who
disclosed the information.

(4) A disclosure pursuant to section 45B, 45C or 45D does not breach—

(a) 40any obligation of confidence owed by the person making the
disclosure, or

(b) any other restriction on the disclosure of information (however
imposed).

(5) The Board must prepare and publish a statement of—

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(a) the principles to which it will have regard in exercising its
functions under sections 45B, 45C and 45D, and

(b) the procedures which it will adopt in exercising those functions.

(6) The Board may at any time revise the statement and, if it decides to do
5so, must publish the statement as revised.

(7) In preparing or revising the statement the Board must consult—

(a) the Minister for the Cabinet Office,

(b) the Information Commissioner,

(c) the Scottish Ministers,

(d) 10the Welsh Ministers,

(e) the Department of Finance in Northern Ireland, and

(f) such other persons as the Board thinks fit.

(8) The fact that this section was not in force when consultation of the kind
mentioned in subsection (7) took place is to be disregarded in
15determining whether there has been compliance with that subsection.

(9) After preparing or revising a statement the Board must lay the
statement, or the statement as revised, before—

(a) Parliament,

(b) the Scottish Parliament,

(c) 20the National Assembly for Wales, and

(d) the Northern Ireland Assembly.

45F Offences relating to notices under section 45C or 45D

(1) A person is guilty of an offence if—

(a) the person is given a notice under section 45C or 45D,

(b) 25the person is required to comply with the notice,

(c) the person fails to do so, and

(d) the person does not have a reasonable excuse for that failure.

(2) A person is guilty of an offence if, in purporting to comply with a notice
under section 45C or 45D, the person—

(a) 30provides information which is false in a material respect, and

(b) knows that the information is false in that respect or is reckless
as to whether it is false in that respect.

(3) A person who is guilty of an offence under subsection (1) or (2) is liable
on summary conviction—

(a) 35in England and Wales, to a fine, and

(b) in Scotland or Northern Ireland, to a fine not exceeding level 5
on the standard scale.

(4) If an offence under this section is committed by a body corporate with
the consent or connivance of an officer of the body, the officer, as well
40as the body, is to be treated as having committed the offence.

(5) In subsection (4) a reference to an officer of a body includes a reference
to—

(a) a director, manager or secretary,

(b) a person purporting to act as a director, manager or secretary,
45and

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(c) if the affairs of the body are managed by its members, a
member.

(6) Where an offence under this section is committed by a partnership
(whether or not a limited partnership) subsection (4) has effect, but as
5if a reference to an officer of the body were a reference to—

(a) a partner, and

(b) a person purporting to act as a partner.

45G Code of practice on changes to data systems

(1) The Board must prepare, adopt and publish a code of practice
10containing guidance on the matters to be taken into account by a public
authority in making changes to—

(a) its processes for collecting, organising, storing or retrieving
information, or

(b) its processes (if any) for supplying information to the Board.

(2) 15A public authority must have regard to any code of practice under this
section in making such changes.

(3) The Board may at any time revise a code of practice under this section
and, if it decides to do so, must publish the code as revised.

(4) In preparing or revising a code of practice under this section, the Board
20must consult—

(a) the Minister for the Cabinet Office,

(b) the Scottish Ministers,

(c) the Welsh Ministers,

(d) the Department of Finance in Northern Ireland, and

(e) 25such other persons as the Board thinks fit.

(5) The fact that this section was not in force when consultation of the kind
mentioned in subsection (4) took place is to be disregarded in
determining whether there has been compliance with that subsection.

(6) After preparing or revising a code of practice under this section the
30Board must lay the code, or the code as revised, before—

(a) Parliament,

(b) the Scottish Parliament,

(c) the National Assembly for Wales, and

(d) the Northern Ireland Assembly.

(7) 35The reference in subsection (1) to making changes to a process includes
introducing or removing a process.

(8) This section binds the Crown.

(9) The reference to the Crown in subsection (8) does not include—

(a) Her Majesty in Her private capacity,

(b) 40Her Majesty in right of the Duchy of Lancaster, or

(c) the Duke of Cornwall.”

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68 Disclosure by the Statistics Board to devolved administrations

After section 53 of the Statistics and Registration Service Act 2007 insert—

53A Disclosure by the Board to devolved administrations

(1) Subject to this section, the Board may disclose information held by the
5Board in connection with the exercise of any of its functions to a
devolved authority.

(2) In this section “devolved authority” means—

(a) a person who is a part of the Scottish Administration,

(b) the Welsh Ministers, or

(c) 10the Department of Finance in Northern Ireland.

(3) Information may only be disclosed under this section for the purposes
of any or all of the statistical functions of a devolved authority.

(4) Information may only be disclosed under this section in response to a
request in writing by a devolved authority which specifies—

(a) 15the information which is sought, and

(b) the purposes for which it is sought.

(5) A request under subsection (4) may request information to be disclosed
on more than one date specified in the notice within a period specified
in the notice.

(6) 20Information may be disclosed under this section only if—

(a) the Board is satisfied that the information is required for the
purposes of the statistical functions of the devolved authority
which are specified in the request,

(b) the Board is satisfied that the information will not be used for
25any other purpose, and

(c) if the information was obtained by the Board from a public
authority, the authority consents to the disclosure.

(7) The Board may—

(a) disclose information under this section subject to conditions to
30be met by the devolved authority;

(b) from time to time modify conditions subject to which
information has been disclosed;

(c) in the case of information which it is disclosing in response to a
request to which subsection (5) applies, cease to disclose
35information in response to the request if any of the conditions
are breached.

(8) A devolved authority may only use information disclosed under this
section for the purposes for which it was disclosed.

(9) In the application of section 39 to personal information which has been
40disclosed to a devolved authority under this section, paragraphs (c)
and (i) of subsection (4) of that section do not apply.

(10) This section does not authorise the making of a disclosure which
would—

(a) breach any obligation of confidence owed by the Board,

(b) 45contravene the Data Protection Act 1998,

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(c) be prohibited by Part 1 of the Regulation of Investigatory
Powers Act 2000, or

(d) breach any other restriction on the disclosure of information
(however imposed).

(11) 5Nothing in this section affects the scope of the powers in sections 51 to
53.”

Part 6 OFCOM and other regulation

OFCOM: reports etc

69 10OFCOM reports on infrastructure etc

(1) The Communications Act 2003 is amended as follows.

(2) After section 134A insert—

134AA Additional OFCOM reports on infrastructure etc

(1) OFCOM may prepare reports dealing with—

(a) 15any of the electronic communications network matters listed in
section 134B(1);

(b) any of the electronic communications services matters listed in
section 134B(2).

(2) OFCOM may publish a report under this section in such manner as
20they consider appropriate for bringing it to the attention of persons
who, in their opinion, are likely to have an interest in it.

(3) Before publishing a report under this section OFCOM must consider—

(a) whether any of the information to be contained in it is
information that they could refuse to disclose in response to a
25request under the Freedom of Information Act 2000, and

(b) if so, whether that information should be excluded from the
report.

(4) This section does not affect OFCOM’s duty to prepare reports under
section 134A.

134AB 30 Publication of information required for purpose of preparing reports

(1) OFCOM may publish—

(a) any relevant section 135 information, and

(b) any information derived from relevant section 135 information.

(2) Before publishing information under this section OFCOM must
35consider—

(a) whether any of the information that they propose to publish is
information that they could refuse to disclose in response to a
request under the Freedom of Information Act 2000, and

(b) if so, whether that information should be published.

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(3) In this section “relevant section 135 information” means information
required by OFCOM under section 135 for the purpose of preparing a
report under section 134A or 134AA.”

(3) In section 134B (networks and services matters)—

(a) 5in subsections (1) and (2), for “section 134A” substitute “sections 134A
and 134AA”, and

(b) in subsection (4), after “134A” insert “or 134AA”.

(4) In section 135(3) (information required for purposes of OFCOM functions),
after paragraph (ic) insert—

(ica) 10preparing a report under section 134AA;”.

(5) In section 393(6)(a) (general restrictions on disclosure of information), after
“26” insert “, 134AB”.

70 Comparative overviews of quality and prices

(1) The Communications Act 2003 is amended as follows.

(2) 15After section 134C insert—

“Comparative overviews
134D Comparative overviews of quality and prices

(1) OFCOM may, in the interest of the end-users of public electronic
communications services, carry out comparative overviews of the
20quality and prices of such services.

(2) OFCOM may publish a comparative overview carried out under this
section in such manner as they consider appropriate for bringing it to
the attention of persons who, in their opinion, are likely to have an
interest in it.”

(3) 25In section 136 (information required for related purposes)—

(a) in subsection (1) for “specified in subsection (2)” substitute “of carrying
out comparative overviews under section 134D”, and

(b) omit subsection (2).

(4) In section 393(6) (general restrictions on disclosure of information), after
30paragraph (b) insert—

(ba) limits the matters that may be published as part of a
comparative overview carried out by OFCOM under section
134D;”.

OFCOM: information

71 35Conditions about allocation of telephone numbers

In section 58 of the Communications Act 2003 (conditions about allocation and
adoption of telephone numbers), after subsection (2) insert—

(2A) General conditions may also require a communications provider to
whom telephone numbers have been allocated—