6 Jul. 2022
CSC Work program 2022-2024

Article 38 – Position of the data protection officer

Paragraph 1

The controller and the processor shall ensure that the data protection officer is involved, properly and in a timely manner, in all issues which relate to the protection of personal data.

Paragraph 2

The controller and processor shall support the data protection officer in performing the tasks referred to in Article 39 by providing resources necessary to carry out those tasks and access to personal data and processing operations, and to maintain his or her expert knowledge.

Paragraph 3

The controller and processor shall ensure that the data protection officer does not receive any instructions regarding the exercise of those tasks. He or she shall not be dismissed or penalised by the controller or the processor for performing his tasks. The data protection officer shall directly report to the highest management level of the controller or the processor.

Paragraph 4

Data subjects may contact the data protection officer with regard to all issues related to processing of their personal data and to the exercise of their rights under this Regulation.

Paragraph 5

The data protection officer shall be bound by secrecy or confidentiality concerning the performance of his or her tasks, in accordance with Union or Member State law.

Paragraph 6

The data protection officer may fulfil other tasks and duties. The controller or processor shall ensure that any such tasks and duties do not result in a conflict of interests.


  • GDPR references
  • Fines
  • Recitals
  • Directive 95/46/EC
  • SA
  • Case-law

No GDPR article references available for this article.

Infringements regarding the obligations of the controller and the processor pursuant to this article shall, in accordance with Article 83(2), be subject to administrative fines up to 10 000 000 EUR, or in the case of an undertaking, up to 2 % of the total worldwide annual turnover of the preceding financial year, whichever is higher.

(97) Where the processing is carried out by a public authority, except for courts or independent judicial authorities when acting in their judicial capacity, where, in the private sector, processing is carried out by a controller whose core activities consist of processing operations that require regular and systematic monitoring of the data subjects on a large scale, or where the core activities of the controller or the processor consist of processing on a large scale of special categories of personal data and data relating to criminal convictions and offences, a person with expert knowledge of data protection law and practices should assist the controller or processor to monitor internal compliance with this Regulation. In the private sector, the core activities of a controller relate to its primary activities and do not relate to the processing of personal data as ancillary activities. The necessary level of expert knowledge should be determined in particular according to the data processing operations carried out and the protection required for the personal data processed by the controller or the processor. Such data protection officers, whether or not they are an employee of the controller, should be in a position to perform their duties and tasks in an independent manner.
Article 18 Obligation to notify the supervisory authority
2. Member States may provide for the simplification of or exemption from notification only in the following cases and under the following conditions:
  • where, for categories of processing operations which are unlikely, taking account of the data to be processed, to affect adversely the rights and freedoms of data subjects, they specify the purposes of the processing, the data or categories of data undergoing processing, the category or categories of data subject, the recipients or categories of recipient to whom the data are to be disclosed and the length of time the data are to be stored, and/or
  • where thecontroller, in compliance with the national law which governs him, appoints a personal data protection official, responsible in particular:
  • for ensuring in an independent manner the internal application of the national provisions taken pursuant to this Directive
  • for keeping the register of processing operations carried out by thecontroller, containing the items of information referred to in Article 21 (2),
thereby ensuring that the rights and freedoms of the data subjects are unlikely to be adversely affected by the processing operations.