Policy primer on non-personal data 

  • 20 November 2023

Download the ICC Policy Primer

Explore the transformative power of non-personal data in this report. Understand how non-personal data plays a crucial role in addressing global challenges and discover how it fuels positive societal impacts. From tracking disease outbreaks to enhancing cross-border cybersecurity, the report outlines the landscape of non-personal data benefits while highlighting challenges hindering its full potential. It advocates for a balanced and targeted approach to cross-border data, promoting economic and societal well-being.

Go directly to:

Non-personal data plays a critical role in providing solutions to global challenges. Unlocking its full potential requires policymakers, businesses, and all other stakeholders to collaborate to construct policy environments that can capitalise on its benefits.  

This report gives insights into the different ways that non-personal data has a positive impact on society, with benefits including, but not limited to: 

  1. Tracking disease outbreaks; 
  1. Facilitating international scientific cooperation; 
  1. Understanding climate-related trends; 
  1.  Improving agricultural practices for increased efficiency; 
  1. Optimising energy consumption; 
  1. Developing evidence-based policy; 
  1. Enhancing cross-border cybersecurity cooperation. 

In addition, businesses of all sizes benefit from the transfer of data across borders, allowing companies to establish and maintain international supply chains and smaller businesses to enter new markets or reduce operating costs. 

Despite these benefits, international flows of non-personal data are frequently limited by restrictions and data localisation measures. A growing patchwork of regulations can also create barriers to realising the potential of non-personal data. This report explores the impact of data flow restrictions including: 

As the world’s largest business organisation, ICC is committed to advocating for policies which allow non-personal data to be leveraged for economic and societal benefits. ICC believes in a multi-stakeholder and interoperable approach to data governance based on the realities of a transboundary digital world. 

A balanced and targeted approach to cross-border data flows can help unlock the immense benefits of non-personal data. The highly diverse nature of non-personal calls for policy measures that allow for the transfer of non-personal data across borders as a default, with any necessary regulations for specific cases being highly targeted and evidence-based.