Posted in EU Data Protection

Opinion

European Court Gives a Boost to EU Data Protection Reform

On April 8, the Court of Justice of the European Union invalidated the EU Data Retention Directive 2006/24. Beyond its significance for data retention, this judgment has important implications for EU data protection law in general and the proposed General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in particular.

More from Christopher Kuner

Data Transfers

Update: EU and APEC—A Roadmap for Global Interoperability?

By John Kropf, CIPP/US, CIPP/G

In November 2013, Malcolm Crompton, CIPP/US, and I suggested in a short IAPP article for The Privacy Advisor that the challenge for global data flows was interoperability but that there was reason for optimism between the world’s two largest economic entities: the EU and the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) (EU and APEC: A Roadmap for Global Interoperability?).

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The U.S.-EU Privacy Debate: Conventional Wisdom Is Wrong

Everybody knows the conventional wisdom: United States privacy law is weak and fractured, with neither comprehensive data protection legislation nor a dedicated privacy enforcement authority. The European Union is the gold standard of global privacy regulation, with its omnibus Data Protection Directive and collective force of 28 national data protection authorities. But, In fact, far from its caricature as a beat up railcar breathlessly panting behind the EU privacy locomotive, it is the U.S. that drives privacy policymaking worldwide.

More from Omer Tene

Big Data

Can We Balance Data Protection With Value Creation?

“Data People” by Andrés Opcional

In the last few years there has been a dramatic change in the opportunities organizations have to generate value from the data they collect about customers or service users. Customers and users are rapidly becoming collections of “data points” and organizations can learn an awful lot from the analysis of this huge accumulation of data points, also known as “Big Data.”

Organizations are perhaps thrilled, dreaming about new potential applications of digital data but also a bit concerned about hidden risks and unintended consequences. Take, for example, the human rights protections placed on personal data by the EU.  Regulators are watching closely, intending to preserve the eight basic privacy principles without compromising the free flow of information.

Some may ask whether it’s even possible to balance the two.

More from Sara Degli Esposti

Opinion

How Will Obama’s NSA Plans Impact European Data Protection Requirements?

By Eduardo Ustaran, CIPP/E

The recently revealed plans by President Barack Obama to reform the way in which the U.S. intelligence services gather and use data throughout the world have had a lukewarm reception by European politicians. The rhetoric by members of the European Parliament in particular suggests that Obama’s proposed reforms stopped short of what would have been comforting enough for them. Such reforms are a work in progress that will extend over months and years, but Obama’s stance is bound to have a very direct effect on existing and forthcoming EU data protection requirements.

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Opinion

What a 21st Century Privacy Law Could—and Should—Achieve

By Phil Lee, CIPP/E, CIPM

It’s no secret that the EU’s proposed General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) hangs in the balance. Some have even declared it dead (see here), though, to paraphrase Mark Twain, those reports are somewhat exaggerated. Nevertheless, 2014 will prove a pivotal year for privacy in the European Union: Either we’ll see some variant of the proposed regulation adopted in one form or another, or we’ll be heading back to the drawing board.

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Opinion

The Questionable Legality and Practicality of the EU’s Proposed “Anti-FISA” Clause

As it has been noted on these pages one of the tangible results of the Snowden revelations has been the (re)introduction of a provision in the EU’s proposed General Data Protection Regulation aiming to limit and control the transfer of personal data to authorities in third countries, the main concern motivating this initiative clearly being concerns regarding the transfer of personal data to U.S. intelligence and law enforcement authorities.

Originally, the European Commission had intended for such a provision to be included in Article 42 of the data protection reform proposal tabled in January 2012, but—if one chooses to believe the many press reports one the matter—due to intense lobbying pressure from the U.S. government, the provision was removed. That is, of course, not the full picture.

Opinion

The Baffling Case of the Headless EDPS

Peter Hustinx (right) reflects on a career in privacy, with Christopher Kuner, before a standing-room crowd at the IAPP Data Protection Congress 2013 in Brussels.

After working in Brussels for the last 15 years, I have become accustomed to the byzantine machinations of European politics. But the spectacle that is currently unfolding concerning appointment of a new European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS) and Assistant Supervisor paints a particularly dismal picture of how data protection in the EU can become a political football.

More from Christopher Kuner