Review of the ePrivacy Directive: opinion of the European Data Protection Supervisor 25.7.16

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The European Data Protection Supervisor has said that the EU's forthcoming new legal framework on ePrivacy "must be extended... to take account of technological and societal changes."


The EDPS calls for individuals to be given "the same level of protection" for all means of electronic communication (including "machine-to-machine communications in the context of the Internet of Things"); for consent to digital tracking to be "genuine" and "freely given"; and for the new rules to "clearly allows users to use end-to-end encryption (without 'back-doors') to protect their electronic communications. Decryption, reverse engineering or monitoring of communications protected by encryption should be prohibited."

See: European Data Protection Supervisor: Preliminary EDPS Opinion on the review of the ePrivacy Directive (2002/58/EC) (pdf)

The opinion is summarised in the EDPS press release: ePrivacy rules should be smarter, clearer, stronger (pdf).

The EDPS' opinion comes some weeks after the closure of the public consultation on the reform of the ePrivacy Directive (European Commission, link).

While the EDPS' opinion echoes calls made by civil society groups for the rules on the privacy of electronic communications to be strengthened, industry has other ideas: the repeal of the rules altogether. See: Industry calls for the repeal of the e-Privacy Directive to "empower trust and innovation" (Statewatch News Online)

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