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Guernsey has an extensive set of intellectual property laws. This body of laws provides some rights not found in many other jurisdictions. This largely determines the fact that the registration of IP objects in Guernsey is very popular among foreign entrepreneurs, and especially among those who plan to use IP on the island. The databases on the island are protected by a special decree. Next, we will describe in more detail the features of the legal regime for IP protection, in particular, databases in the field of intellectual property.

The importance of protecting databases

What is a database? This term is defined as "a collection of independent works, data or other material that is organized and accessible by electronic or other means." It is a broad definition that encompasses a range of IP storage structures.

Almost all modern corporate information systems, as well as mass-use mobile and web services are built using databases. Due to their prevalence and widespread use, modern databases are subject to an impressive number of attacks. The most significant threats from the list are those that leak important, confidential or critical information. The stolen data is used as a means of competition, sometimes blackmail and political pressure. And the sale of confidential information has long been a separate branch of the shadow economy.

The right to the database protects the collection of information consisting of data and applies in cases where significant investments have been made in the maintenance of the database.

IP Registration in Guernsey: Protecting Database Rights

Database rights in Guernsey, like other property rights, can be sold, licensed or transferred to third parties. Like copyright, the right to a database is an automatic right and exists from the moment the database is created in a recorded form. Database rights in Guernsey are valid indefinitely if these databases are constantly updated.

Other more typical IP rights such as copyright, patents and TM are also available in Guernsey, as is the world's first registered image right. The intellectual property rights developed by the employee in the course of their employment are owned by the employer (this applies in particular to patents, copyrights and database rights).

To take advantage of the protection, it is worth registering the IP object in Guernsey.

Legal protection of programs and databases in Guernsey

In terms of data protection, Guernsey is one of the few jurisdictions that applies the provisions of European Union laws regarding the protection of database rights. The country's authorities have introduced the DPGL protocol, which addresses:

  • general principles of data protection;
  • obligations of data processors;
  • processing conditions;
  • the obligation of companies to employ data protection officers;
  • rights of data subjects;
  • cross-border data transfer;
  • remedies and enforcement.

The protocol largely reflects the EU position, and the rules regarding digital analysis are similar to those in the EU.

Due to the fact that Guernsey legislation is similar to EU legislation in this area, the approach of the newly created Data Protection Department in Guernsey to law enforcement and handling certain technologies is similar to that of European data protection authorities.

There are government and industry regulations that clearly define the requirements for protecting data from leaks, including from databases. Nobody canceled the requirements of the international PCI DSS standard for systems using bank cards.


Increasing business losses, legislation and information security standards require reducing the risks of leaks of corporate information and personal data, including from databases.

IP rights protection in Guernsey is taken very seriously. It is worth considering if updates are taking place in the database - the protection of rights to the databases can be extended. 

We have briefly reviewed basic information about database rights in Guernsey. A consultation on Guernsey's data protection rights provided by our qualified specialists will help you sort out the remaining issues.