Unsurprisingly, the Labour manifesto made no express mention of data protection and instead focussed on commitments to developing the AI sector. Within this, Labour proposes an industrial strategy that supports AI development and removes planning barriers to new datacentres. There will be the creation of a National Data Library promoting data sharing from existing research to help deliver “data-driven public services”. The party also plan to establish a new Regulatory Innovation Office to help regulators “update regulation, speed up approval timelines, and co-ordinate issues that span existing boundaries”. With this in mind, Labour seem to go a little further than the previous government's position on AI regulation, aiming to promote safe development and use of AI models and reduce harmful AI content by “introducing binding regulation on the handful of companies developing the most powerful AI models and by banning the creation of sexually explicit deepfakes”. 

The Labour Party seem to adopt a safety first approach with express intention to build on the Online Safety Act, “bringing forward provisions” and exploring “further measures to keep everyone safe online, particularly when using social media”. But it is unclear what specific measures Labour will adopt to achieve this. The Labour Party also aims to "introduce a new expanded fraud strategy to tackle the full range of threats, including online", working with tech companies to stop fraudsters exploiting their platforms.

More broadly, the concept of “digital” popped up several times throughout the manifesto. There is discussion about investing in “digital forensics”, ensuring children are digitally literate – developing “essential digital, speaking and creative skills”, and accessing international markets through standalone sector deals such as digital trade agreements. 

For further information see our article Navigating the UK's Digital Regulation Landscape: Where are we headed under Labour?