27 February 2013

Article 29 Working Party publishes statement on the draft Regulation and Directive

The statement focuses on 6 specific areas of concern, as follows:  

  1. Flexibility for the public sector – the Working Party dislikes this
  2. Personal data and pseudonymisation – the statement repeats earlier guidance
  3. Consent – the statement repeats earlier guidance
  4. Governance – the successor to the Working Party and DPAs should have the flexibility and budget to be effective
  5. International data transfers - emphasizing the need for use of the Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty; and
  6. The risk-based approach with which the Working Party sympathizes, whilst noting that this is both a matter of size and nature of data processed.

The Art 29 WP statement can be found here.

7 March 2013

Viviane Reding addresses criticisms of the draft Regulation in speech to 2nd Annual Cloud Computing Conference

Reding explained that the European Parliament has accelerated its work on the draft Regulation and that all parties are pressing forward to complete negotiations on the new data protection regulation regime. She went on to criticise lobbyists for “scaremongering tactics” which have lead to some areas of the debate, such as the discussion about consent, being “overblown”. Reding maintained that reform of data protection legislation is critical for EU citizens and that the debate should be concluded as soon as possible, within the mandate of the current European Parliament. She reminded her listeners that the rules proposed by the Commission had not “fallen from the sky” and were based on EU law which has been in force since 1995.

The text of the speech can be read here.

19 March 2013

JURI adopts opinion on Draft Regulation

Following the publication of the draft report of Jan Phillip Albrecht in January, discussions have been taking place in four EP Committees charged with publishing official opinions on the Regulation. These Committees are:

  • ITRE (Industry, Research and Energy Committee);
  • IMCO (Internal Market and Consumer Protection);
  • EMPL (Employment Committee); and
  • JURI (Legal Affairs Committee).

The ITRE, IMCO and EMPL committees all voted on their official opinions in February (as noted in our March Update). JURI voted to adopt its opinion on 19 March. JURI supports the right to be forgotten, but states that the right should not apply to healthcare data, which is important to retain. The opinions of the four committees are non binding and LIBE (the Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs Committee) will vote on the draft Directive and draft Regulation at its meeting on 29-30 May 2013.

The JURI press release can be read here.