28 March 2012
Support our work: become a Friend of Statewatch from as little as £1/€1 per month.
PRESS RELEASE NO. 25/2002, 2 October 2002
The European Ombudsman, Jacob Söderman, today proposed clarification of the Community rules on data protection to emphasise that these rules do not limit the principle of openness and the right of access to official documents. The Ombudsman is concerned that data protection rules are being misinterpreted as implying the existence of a general right to participate anonymously in public activities.
According to the Ombudsman "this misinterpretation risks subverting the principle of openness and the public's right of access to documents, both at the level of the Union and in the Member States." In a paper entitled "The misuse of data protection rules in the European Union", the Ombudsman provides examples of this misinterpretation.
The Ombudsman proposed the changes in a letter to Commission President Prodi where he stated that "the current review of the Community's data protection rules offers the possibility to promote their correct interpretation and application".
The letter to President Prodi and the paper - "The misuse of data protection rules in the European Union" - can be found on the Ombudsman's website at:
Ombudsman press release (Word document)
Ombudsman data protection assessment (Word document)
For further information, please call Mr Ian Harden, Head of the Legal Department;tel : 00 32 2 284 38 49
Spotted an error? If you've spotted a problem with this page, just click once to let us know.
Statewatch does not have a corporate view, nor does it seek to create one, the views expressed are those of the author. Statewatch is not responsible for the content of external websites and inclusion of a link does not constitute an endorsement. Registered UK charity number: 1154784. Registered UK company number: 08480724. Registered company name: The Libertarian Research & Education Trust. Registered office: MayDay Rooms, 88 Fleet Street, London EC4Y 1DH. © Statewatch ISSN 1756-851X. Personal usage as private individuals "fair dealing" is allowed. We also welcome links to material on our site. Usage by those working for organisations is allowed only if the organisation holds an appropriate licence from the relevant reprographic rights organisation (eg: Copyright Licensing Agency in the UK) with such usage being subject to the terms and conditions of that licence and to local copyright law.