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Commission leaves the European Parliament with lots of work to do

11 January 2017
by EDRi -- last modified 11 January 2017

Today, on 10 January 2017, the European Commission published its proposal for an e-Privacy Regulation. This legislation is crucial to provide clear rules on tracking individuals as they surf the web, and on freedom of communication more generally.


"The European Commission has resisted the most extreme demands from certain parts of industry," said Joe McNamee, Executive Director of European Digital Rights. "However, to promote trust, privacy and innovation, the proposal still needs significant improvement."

The European legal framework protecting our personal data (the General Data Protection Regulation and Law Enforcement Directive on Data Protection) has been recently updated. New devices and technologies that make our life easier in many aspects, also create new threats to our privacy. The role of the e-Privacy Regulation is to clarify the existing legislation, by providing specific rules related to citizens' freedoms in the online environment.

The outcomes of the European Commission's consultation, conducted before the drafting of the new legislation, showed significant differences in priorities between individuals and industry. In the short term, big business would like to take shortcuts to a "big data" society. However, there is no real shortcut.

The last EuroBarometer on e-Privacy shows that what both individuals and business need the same thing: clear rules that inspire trust. Without clear rules and strong safeguards, it is easy for a minority of businesses to destroy trust for everybody and damage individuals' rights.

European Digital Rights (EDRi) is a not-for-profit association of digital civil rights organisations. Our objectives are to promote, protect and uphold civil rights in the field of information and communication technology.

European Digital Rights (EDRi)
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