The Data Protection Commission has confirmed it has written to all political parties stating that it will be conducting a data protection audit of each party in the State.

Deputy Data Protection Commissioner Graham Doyle said the audit will inquire into the processing of personal data by the parties since 25 May 2018 when the European Union's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) came into effect.

In a statement, the DPC said the audit will cover the keeping of databases containing personal data of party members and voters/electors "and, in particular in respect of such databases, the matters of legal basis, the exercise of data subject rights and security".

The audit will inquire into the appointment of a data protection officer as well as the carrying out of data protection impact assessments and the provision of transparent information to data subjects.

The issue of data protection and political parties came to light after it emerged that Sinn Féin had its own database comprising of the Electoral Register along with additional canvass voter information.