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Quad'news about Privacy - Personal Data

ePrivacy: Commission's weak proposal forecasts harsh debates

Paris, 11 January 2017 — On Tuesday 10 January, the European Commission put forward a series of new texts on personal data protection in the EU. It includes the upcoming ePrivacy Regulation which will frame the confidendiality and security of our electronic communications, as well as the famous internet cookies, among other things. Before the legislative process had even started, lobbies from the digital industry and telecom operators collaborated closely to water down as much as possible the reform that was supposed to not only provide better security and confidentiality to electronic communications, but also to give users control of their data back. Nonetheless, civil society has not had its last word just yet. In the coming months, we are set to engage in a harsh legislative battle to make the ePrivacy a really ambitious Regulation that protects our rights and freedoms.

Generalised data retention: a blow to mass surveillance!

Paris, 22 December 2016 — The European Court of Justice published a very important decision last 21 December, condemning the principle of generalised data retention by operators, including when mandated by Member States implementing this principle on issues linked to security or fight against crime. Data retention must be the exception and not the rule and can only be used with strong safeguards due to the very serious violation that such retention constitutes for privacy. La Quadrature du Net welcomes this very positive decision and is asking French government to acknowledge European decisions by cancelling all legislation linked to the exploitation or conservation of internet users data.

French State of Emergency: same player, play again

Update of 10 January 2017: French Senate adopted the extension as well. The text is available here.

Update of 14 December 2016: French National Assembly adopted yesterday the extension of the state emergency until July 2017. On Thursday 15 December, it is Senate's turn to decide.

Paris, 14 December 2016 — The French National Assembly and Senate are about to extend the state of emergency established in France one year ago, on 13 November 2015, for the fith consecutive time. PM Bernard Cazeneuve's administration is requesting a renewal until 15 July 2017 with no guarantee that this state of emergency will end. France is settling into a permanent state of Human Rights suspension and in limitations of civil liberties that become more difficult to block everyday. La Quadrature du Net is calling on MPs to deny this renewal and return to the Rule of Law and the respect of rights and liberties, in this period of crucial elections.

ePrivacy: unraveling the lobbies' falsehoods

Paris, 8 December 2016 — The review of the European ePrivacy directive on the confidentiality of electronic communications may not have reached the limelight yet, but this doesn't mean that the influence work and the fight over interests haven't started. On the contrary, as the draft text is tabled by the European Commission to be published in January 2017, interest groups are at the doors of the European executive power to get their two cents in the upcoming text.

ePrivacy Directive: The EU Commission Must Protect the Confidentiality of Communications

Paris, 21 September 2016 — The European Commission should submit this autumn a draft revision of the 2002 directive on privacy in the electronic communications sector, also called "ePrivacy directive". This future draft follows a public consultation launched by the European Commission in April 2016 that La Quadrature answered. While for months the telecoms industry, GAFA and member States have been intensely lobbying against this fundamental text, the European Commission must resist these pressures and seriously take into account the proposals from civil society associations in order to produce legislation respectful of fundamental rights, including the right to encryption.

Encryption and privacy: La Quadrature du Net Welcomes the Opinion of the European Data Protection Supervisor

Paris, 8 August 2016 — In its opinion on the draft revision to the ePrivacy directive, published on 25 July 2016, the EDPS (European Data Protection Supervisor) took a stand for stronger regulation in favour of privacy. La Quadrature du Net approves the main propositions of this opinion and encourages European legislators to follow them.

French State of Emergency: Overbidding Mass Surveillance

Paris, 21 July 2016 — Once again. The State of Emergency in France has been extended until January. In reaction to violence shaking the country and with the presidential election of 2017 only a few months away, political leaders are indulging an ignominious orgy of security-driven policy. Not satisfied with merely prolonging the state of emergency, lawmakers have also amended the 2015 Intelligence Act passed last year to legalize domestic mass surveillance.

Privacy Shield: a Protection Full of Holes!

11 July 2016 update: On Friday 8 July, Member States have taken an "adequacy decision" that authorises the European Commission to adopt Privacy Shield on 12 July. La Quadrature du Net deeply deplores the rush with which Member States have analysed and adopted this text within only one week, without even waiting for the evaluation by European National Data Protection Authorities, set to meet on July 25 to discuss whether their suggestions and reservations were taken into account in the new text.

Paris, 8 July 2016 — On 8 July 2016, EU Member States, gathering as the so-called "Article 31 Committee", are set to decide whether to adopt or not the "adequacy decision" that will establish a framework for the transfer of personal data between the USA and the EU: the Privacy Shield. This decision, adopted in a rush, does not address the concerns raised during the past weeks by European National Data Protection Authorities (NDPAs), the European Parliament, different European governments, and human rights organisations.

Encryption and human rights: La Quadrature du Net takes part in a UN conference

Paris, 14 June 2016 — La Quadrature du Net is participating at the panel "Encryption and Human Rights" organised at the United Nations by the Committee Justice and Peace of the Dominican Order. This conference will talk about the right to encryption and to privacy in a time where in Europe, those rights are at regularly at risk. The video of this conference will be available on the Mediakit of La Quadrature du Net.

Adoption of three texts on personal data: teach yourself how to be safe!

Paris, 14 April 2016 — Today, the European Parliament adopted three texts on personal data: the regulation framework for personal data processing by private companies, the Directive on judicial and police processing of personal data, and the PNR (Passenger Name Record) that aims at the creation of national records gathering large amounts of data of persons travelling from or to the European Union, including internal flights. These texts feature numerous loopholes that threaten the right to privacy. Given the inability of the institutions to come up with regulations that actually protect Internet users, it is up to each and every one of us to learn how to protect themselves, their personal data and their privacy on the Internet.

Open Letter from the OLN to the WP29 and the European Parliament on the Privacy Shield

Paris, 7 April 2016 — The Privacy Shield, a framework for personal data transfers towards US-based companies, is currently under negotiation. This new agreement follows the invalidation of the Safe Harbor by the European Court of Justice (ECJ), who ruled that it did not uphold a substantially equivalent protection for personal data of people protected under European law, and suggested new measures to address it. Since the draft Privacy Shield does not take these measures into account, the resulting agreement is bound to reduce the fundamental rights of Europeans.

Joint communiqué from the Observatoire des Libertés et du Numérique (Freedoms and Digital Observatory)1

European directive: worrying expansion of anti-terrorism scope

Paris, 1 April 2016 — While tragic attacks struck the heart of the European Union, the directive on combating terrorism, currently being discussed by the European Parliament, could speed up the implementation of security policies across the whole Europe. La Quadrature du Net is concerned about a Europeanisation of the French Anti-Terrorism drifts.

Administrative Access to Metadata: French Council of State Flees EU Debate

Paris, 15 February 2016 — The French Council of State has released an eagerly awaited decision (fr) on the validity of administrative access to connection data. La Quadrature du Net, French Data Network and the FDN Federation have been calling into question the Military Programmation Law (LPM) and its application decree that enables the administration to access connection data without requiring any judicial control. By refusing to repeal the decree and to transmit the question to the European Court of Justice (ECJ) for a preliminary ruling, the Council of State avoids any judicial debate and isolates French vis-à-vis EU case law.

Open Letter to Věra Jourová: From Safe Harbor to Privacy Shield, Words in the Wind

Paris, 10 February 2016 — On 6 October 2015, the European Court of Justice (ECJ) invalidated the Safe Harbor, the agreement concluded in 2000 with the USA in order to give a legal framework to data transfers between the European Union and the USA. The WP29, a working group bringing together all Member States' national data protection authorities, waited until the end of January for the European Commission to draft a new agreement taking into account the requirements of the ECJ. This agreement called "Privacy Shield" was announced on 2 February but only contains vague promises.

Data Retention: Will the French Council of State Defy the ECJ?

Paris, 10 February 2016 — As the French Council of State is set to render a first decision on this burning issue this Friday1, Privacy International (PI) and the Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT) have submitted a third party intervention aiming to support the legal challenges brought by FDN, the FDN Federation and La Quadrature du Net. The goal: repealing the provisions enforcing the generalised retention of metadata in France and allowing the European Court of Justice (ECJ) to play its role of guardian of fundamental rights.