European Data Protection Supervisor suggests the EU should scrap the Data Retention Directive and start again…
You have to feel sorry for Peter Hustinx. He’s the European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS): ‘the European guardian of personal data protection’. He tries to do his job. Sadly, the rest of the European Union simply ignores him. Take the Data Retention Directive (that telecoms companies must keep details of where you go on the internet and who you talk to on the telephone “for a period of not less than six months and not more than two years from the date of the communication”)…
That’s more of an invasion of privacy than we realise until we start seriously thinking about it. Basically, it’s appalling. And that’s more or less what Mr Hustinx thinks. In his recently published “Opinion of the European Data Protection Supervisor on the Evaluation report from the Commission to the Council and the European Parliament on the Data Retention Directive (Directive 2006/24/EC)”, he not merely says it doesn’t pass muster, he goes so far as to suggest it be scrapped and the politicians start again from scratch.
On the basis of the Evaluation report it may be concluded that the Data Retention Directive does not meet the requirements set out by the rights to privacy and data protection, for the following reasons:
- the necessity of data retention as provided for in the Data Retention Directive has not been sufficiently demonstrated;
- data retention could have been regulated in a less privacy-intrusive way;
- the Data Retention Directive lacks foreseeability.
The EDPS calls upon the Commission to consider seriously all options in the impact assessment including the possibility of repealing the Directive, either per se or combined with a proposal for an alternative, more targeted EU measure.
Can there be a more damning opinion?
Will the politicians listen.
Most certainly not.