On January 25, 2012, the European Commission published its long-awaited legislative package to reform EU data protection rules. The package includes a regulation that covers data processing in the private sector and by public authorities and a directive covering data processing for criminal justice purposes, as well as a communication, a report on the protection of personal data processed in the framework of police and judicial cooperation, and an impact assessment with a summary.
The package will now enter the EU’s legislative procedure, which can be expected to take at least two years. The proposals released today include a number of changes from the interservice drafts that were widely leaked in late November 2011, reflecting the controversy that surrounded the drafts within the Commission and the negative opinions issued by a number of Directorates-General.
The Article 29 Working Party also released a response to the Commission’s proposal.