Privacy Advisor

EU officials discuss proposed data protection reform

December 1, 2012

The proposed EU General Data Protection Regulation was front-and-center at this year’s IAPP Europe Data Protection Congress in Brussels, Belgium.

After nearly a year of professionals and lawmakers digesting the proposal, Dutch MEP Sophie in’t Veld said, “the moment has come to get down to business.”

German MEP Jan Phillip Albrecht, who is heading up the European Parliament’s work on the draft, said “it’s time to really get specific, concrete consensus” to find common solutions.  

Backing a regulation “that stands the test of time,” European Commission Director General for Justice Francoise Le Bail discussed the challenges facing the reform efforts.

“We need a regulation that is flexible enough to be applied to technological advances that we may have no notion of right now,” she said.

Article 29 Working Party Chair Jacob Kohnstamm said there is “always room for improvement” but the regulation’s direct applicability in all 27 member states is “a big step forward.”

Kohnstamm did express concerns about public-sector organisations.

“It’s inconceivable,” he said, “that a fundamental human right would not apply to the public sector.”

—IAPP staff