Introducing Privacy in the online sphere
In recent weeks the importance of and potential threat to consumer privacy has been underlined by reports of Google and Facebook becoming privy to increasing amounts of sensitive consumer information. Against this backdrop, ICOMP has published a privacy discussion paper authored by Simon Davies and hosting a cross-panel conference in Israel at which speakers including Simon Davies (LSE Fellow) and Pamela Jones Harbour (former commissioner of the FTC) discussed the need for Privacy by Design. This is discussed in more detail below as ICOMP's newsletter for November examines the increasingly difficult issue of protecting online privacy in a digital age.
Contents of today's ICOMP newsletter:
» Inside Brussels
» Privacy and Street View: lapses and promises
» ICOMP News: Events, New signatories and spokesperson
» ICOMP Events
Inside Brussels: European Commission unveils new EU data protection strategy
On 4 November the European Commission proposed a new strategy to strengthen EU data protection rules and bring them up to date with the challenges raised by new technologies and globalisation. The strategy sets out proposals on how to modernise the EU framework for data protection in order to achieve the following key goals:
Strengthening individuals' rights, so that the collection and use of personal data is limited to the minimum necessary. The Commission underlines that individuals should be clearly informed in a transparent way on how, why, by whom, and for how long their data is collected and used. It also points out that people should be able to give their informed consent to the processing of their personal data and should have the "right to be forgotten" when their data is no longer needed or they want their data to be deleted.
Enhancing the Single Market dimension by reducing the administrative burden on companies and ensuring a true level-playing field. The Commission aims to tackle the differences in the implementation of EU data protection rules and the lack of clarity about which country's rules apply in which cases.
Revising data protection rules in the area of police and criminal justice so that individuals' personal data is also protected in these areas. The Commission is also reviewing the 2006 Data Retention Directive, under which companies are required to store communication traffic data for a period of between six months and two years.
Ensuring high levels of protection for data transferred outside the EU by improving and streamlining procedures for international data transfers. The Commission highlights that the EU should strive for the same levels of protection in cooperation with third countries and promote high standards for data protection at a global level.
More effective enforcement of the rules by strengthening and further harmonising the role and powers of Data Protection Authorities. According to the Commission, improved cooperation and coordination is also strongly needed to ensure a more consistent application of data protection rules across the Single Market.
The Commission is calling on all stakeholders and the public to comment on the proposals included in this new strategy until 15 January 2011. Submissions can be made here.
Based on the outcome of this consultation, the Commission will propose in 2011 a new general legal framework for the protection of personal data in the EU covering data processing operations in all sectors and EU policies. At the same time, the Commission also intends to examine other measures, such as encouraging awareness-raising campaigns on data protection rights and possible self-regulation initiatives by industry.
The European Commission Communication "A comprehensive approach on personal data protection in the European Union" can be found here.
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Privacy and Street View: lapses and promises
By David Wood, ICOMP Legal Counsel
Privacy is a contentious issue. With the modern economy increasingly relying on vast amounts of data, much of which is personal or sensitive, the pressure on companies who collect it to do so openly and transparently is enormous.
This month's announcement by the UK Information Commissioner that Google had committed a "significant breach" of UK data protection laws could prove to be of long-lasting importance. This follows from Google's recent admission that "entire emails and URLs were captured, as well as passwords" by its Street View cars.
This finding and a subsequent show of contrition from Google are welcome developments, especially if the latter heralds a U-turn by Google, which dominates Europe's online search market, on its commitment to high standards and transparency.
The full blog entry can be accessed here.
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Welcome to our new signatories:
UDECAM: the French Union of Media Agencies dedicated to defending and promoting the French media agencies in their relations with various players in the advertising market, public authorities, opinion leaders and foreign media agencies.
Tendances Institut: an e-reputation-management company which specialises in setting up effective e-influence strategies and thereby enables its client companies and the institutions to control their societal environment.
Welcome to a new spokesperson: Marie-Anne Gallot Le Lorier
This month, ICOMP is delighted to announce the appointment of a new spokesperson for France: Mare-Anne Gallot Le Lorier.
Mme Le Lorier is the legal adviser for the SNE (Syndicat National de l'Edition), which is the National Federation of Publishers in France.
A Paris based lawyer, Marie-Anne specialises in intellectual property law, Internet law, contract law, tort law and insurance law and litigation; she is also a member of the Paris and National Bar Councils. Currently, she is as Partner at Ngo, Miguérès & Associés Law Firm. In the past, she was a partner at Flecheux & Associés from 2000 to 2006; prior to that, she was a Partner at Lussan-Brouillaud Law Firm in 1993.
Marie-Anne has been recognised throughout her career, including by the French national Legion d'Honneur and Ordre National du Merite awards.
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Privacy by Design conference, Israel
On 29 October 2010, privacy professionals from across government, business, legal and academic spheres gathered in Jerusalem to explore the impact of new technologies on user privacy.
An ICOMP hosted cross-industry panel discussion held in conjunction with the conference explored one issue at the heart of this debate and an underlying theme of this year's event: Privacy by Design.
The speakers included Simon Davies, visiting senior fellow at the London School of Economics and founder of the advocacy and watchdog group, Privacy International and Pamela Jones Harbour, Former FTC Commissioner and current partner at Fulbright & Jaworski L.L.P.
A number of recommendations emerged from the discussion:
- There is a clear role for regulators in the application of Privacy by Design.
- Privacy by Design should be engineered at the earliest possible stage and therefore funding should be allocated to educate those who write code and to instil an 'ethical compass'.
- If a self-regulatory environment is to be established, it is essential that businesses are incentivised to implement Privacy by Design.
- Privacy marks the intersection between competition and consumer protection law and, as such, should be considered in the context of both.
ICOMP's privacy discussion paper can be accessed here.
ICOMP at FICOD 2010: Intellectual Property on the Internet
On 16th November, ICOMP will in Madrid for FICOD 2010, the International Forum of Digital Content; an important meeting point for great and the good in the online and digital content sphere.
Andrés Font Galarza, ICOMP's spokesperson in Spain, provided ICOMP's view on how Internet and content industries are increasingly overlapping. Writers, artists, photographers, journalists, brand owners, musicians, directors, compositors, and software developers frequently rail against the Internet practices of certain companies which repeatedly infringe their copyrights and weaken their businesses. The difficulties faced by newspapers owing to the advent of new business models and the diminishing level of competition in online advertising will also be discussed. Andrés presented ICOMP's position based on the Intellectual Property Whitepaper, which was launched in Spain in September.
More information on this event is available at FICOD's website, and shortly in the Spanish-language subsite of the ICOMP website.
ICOMP Deliberative Debate at Eurobest 2010
This session, to be held on 7 December in Hamburg, challenges attendees to brainstorm actionable solutions to the current 'search centric' model of online advertising.
This workshop will be conducted in form of a deliberative debate held under Chatham House rules focusing on the future of advertising within an increasingly digitised media landscape. It will aim to encourage healthy debate around the future of advertising and whether it lies 'beyond search'.
Roundtable Discussions will be chaired by Auke Haagsma (ICOMP Director), Brendan Tansey (CEO Wunderman UK), Dr. Andrea Malgara (partner of Premium Media Solutions in Unterföhring) and Prof. Hendrik Speck (Professor for Digital Media at the University of Applied Sciences in Kaiserslautern). The overall event will be moderated by Lord Alan Watson, ICOMP's Chairman
More information can be found at Eurobest's website.
4th Pan-European Intellectual Property Summit, Brussels
ICOMP is pleased to announce its support of the 4th pan-European Intellectual Property Summit.
The IP Summit 2010 will gather 150+ speakers and 600 delegates on December 2-3 at the Hotel Le Plaza Brussels (Belgium) to discuss issues such as patent and trademark reforms in Europe, open innovation, IP valuation and due diligence, monetization and brokerage of intellectual assets, antitrust issues and industry challenges related to Internet.
Keynotes and plenary speakers will include EU Commission Vice President and Commissioner Neelie Kroes (Digital Agenda), European commissioners Michel Barnier (Internal Market) and Karel De Gucht (Trade), EPO President Benoît Battistelli and OHIM President António Campinos, EU Commission Director of the Knowledge Economy Margot Fröhlinger, BusinessEurope President Dr Jürgen Thumann, and senior corporate executives at GE, Unilever, Alstom, and Mylan.
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