As we previously reported, on May 3-4, 2012, the European data protection authorities’ (“DPAs’”) Spring Conference was held in Luxembourg, and the Data Protection Commissioners closed the conference by issuing a resolution on European data protection reform. In their resolution, the Data Protection Commissioners expressed general satisfaction with the ongoing modernization of the data protection frameworks of the European Union, the Council of Europe and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.
Among other key points in the resolution, the Commissioners made note of efforts to strengthen and clarify individual rights in relation to data protection, general improvements made in accountability requirements, the strengthening of the role of independent data protection authorities throughout the reforms, and the development of a more comprehensive global framework that will ensure that data protection principles are upheld “across all areas.” More specifically, the Commissioners approved of the increased responsibilities and powers attributed to independent data protection authorities in the EU data protection reform package. The Commissioners also encouraged the Council of Europe to follow through with the ambitious revision of Convention 108 it suggested last October.
With respect to potential improvements, the Commissioners indicated that they expect to see progress on the Directive on the processing of personal data for criminal investigations, in particular through the introduction of a provision addressing the transfer of data from private parties to law enforcement authorities.