On April 28, 2015, the Italian Data Privacy Authority (the Authority) launched a public consultation on the Internet of Things aimed at collecting contributions from stakeholders and assessing its potential impact on consumers’ privacy. This public consultation in Italy follows the opinion of the EU Article 29 Working Party of September 2014 and a more recent report of the U.S. Federal Trade Commission of January 2015, which had identified a number of issues and challenges in relation to the Internet of Things. Interested parties can submit their comments to the Authority by e-mail within 180 days of the publication in the Official Journal of the decision to launch the consultation (expected in the next few days).

This is an outstanding opportunity for stakeholders to provide their contribution on issues such as users’ profiling, data anonymization, the applicability of the data protection by design principles and the use of certification and authentication tools, in order to identify a set of best practices to ensure that compliance with data privacy rules does not constitute a limit to the development of Internet of Things technologies. The consultation might hopefully result in the adoption of specific guidance by the Authority on the application of data privacy rules to businesses active in the Internet of Things market, which currently face significant compliance issues.