Are UK Nightclubs Breaking Data Laws by Storing Your ID Details and Fingerprints?


Frankie Mullin discusses on the Vice website if nightclubs are breaking the law storing clubbers finger prints and scanned IDs.

ID scanning equipment is increasingly a feature in clubs and bars across the UK and is often required by the local licensing authority as part of the licence conditions for a venue.  However, there are concerns about the storage and retention of this personal data and the use to which it can be put, particularly as club owners were found to be unclear about data protection requirements.

The power to require clubs to collect ID is in the Licensing Act 2003 (Mandatory Licensing Conditions) Order 2010, which was introduced by the coalition government.  In the article NO2ID’s General Secretary Guy Herbert highlights that:

“…. at the same time as the government was making a fanfare about repealing Labour’s ID Cards legislation, they were creating a special case of requiring the production of an official ID.”

He also noted that the requirement in the act was specifically for identification, not proof of age.