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Friday, 18 July 2014

Emergency Data Retention Legislation DRIP v Europe - now this could get interesting..

Quick one (I don't have much time for blogging at the moment). Late last night I received notification from Europe's TRIS system that UK emergency data retention legislation DRIP rushed through parliament this week was notified to the Council of Europe as a technical measure under common market trade and industry rules.

The UK government must notify Brussels under the 'Authorisation Directive' (98/34/EC) of upcoming changes to 'technical standards' that might affect cross-border trade, e.g. in the provision of telecommunications services. For more information on EC notification see my blog on the 2 remaining pieces of legislation required for the file sharing clamp-down under the Digital Economy Act.

If you're not quite following I don't blame you; what it does mean is that things could get very interesting. The UK has to ask EC for permission to re-enact an EU law the ECHR struck down as incompatible with our Human Rights.

It also means at least a 90-day window before it can become law.

Interesting times - and also interesting to note the parallel debate from parts of the establishment pushing to distance ourselves from Europe and leave the European Convention on Human Rights.


1 comment:

  1. I think that the article is conflating (a) the Council of Europe and the European Court of Human Rights, with (b) the European Union and the European Court of Juctice. This issue concerns the latter and not the former.

    My understanding is that the starting point is that the data in question should be kept (if at all) only for as long as is necessary for the legitimate purposes (operational, billing etc.) of the party keeping it, and then it must be deleted. The objective of keeping it longer was to retain it for certain types of purposes such as fighting terrorism etc. However, the actual implementation appeared to be a carte blanche whereby there was a general requirement to store the data which could then be used for all sorts of purposes, no matter how trivial.

    The fresh UK legislation appears not to qualify in any way the purpose for which such retained data might be used - on the face of it, such retained data could be required by the courts to be disclosed for the purposes of small and/or trivial civil claims. That, arguably, violates EU requirements.


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