Data Protection: what you should know about the proposed new Data Protection Regulation without forgetting current legislation
February 20, 2014
In January 2012, the European Commission published its proposal for a general Regulation on Data Protection, which would apply directly in all EU Member States. The new Regulation should replace the current Directive 95/46/EC on the protection of individuals with regard to the processing of personal data and on the free movement of such data and the various national laws implementing this Directive, such as the Belgian Data Protection Act.
The Commission’s proposal meanwhile has been extensively discussed within the European Parliament and the Council of the European Union. Although it is currently unclear whether the new Regulation will still be voted before the EU elections in May 2014 or thereafter, we will highlight during this seminar the most important changes that are expected under the new legal framework, such as the increased enforcement mechanism that includes severe financial sanctions.
Meanwhile, one should not forget that this existing legislation is still in place and if the new Regulation will be voted, it will only sort its effects in 2016 or even later. Hence, whereas companies should definitively start thinking about how they will deal with the new Regulation (start thinking about “Privacy by design”, for instance), they should not forget about their obligations under the current legislation.
Indeed, recent events such as the NSA’s Prism program have made privacy and data protection an increasingly important topic in the media and data breaches may result in negative media attention. We will provide a few examples of data protection issues under the current legislation that we have encountered in case law or that we have handled for clients.
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