On March 6, 2013, the French Data Protection Authority (the “CNIL”) announced that it launched a consultation of relevant private and public actors for the purpose of determining whether the CNIL should adopt an initiative on “Open Data.”

Open Data is a movement at the national and EU levels aimed at facilitating access to and re-use of public sector information. In December 2011, France released the beta version of its open government data website, data.gouv.fr. Other EU Member States previously had set up open data portals (such as the UK’s data.gov.uk portal). After adopting a communication on Open Data on December 12, 2011, the European Commission also launched a portal website for data held by the European Commission, the European Environment Agency, and potentially other institutions and bodies of the European Union.

The consultation launched by the CNIL is intended to improve its understanding of this movement and the consequences for the protection of personal data.