CNIL Official Provides Insight Into EU Privacy Law Reform

Florence Raynal, Head of the International Division of the French Commission Nationale de l'Informatique et des Libertés (CNIL) recently said at an American Chamber of Commerce in France (AmCham) that the European Commission's legislative proposals for revision of the 1995 EU Privacy Directive would be released before the end of 2011, and that the new legislative package should be adopted by 2014.  Raynal said the new package might include a regulation, which unlike a directive  would have direct effect, and thereby avoid some of the harmonisation problems encountered in connection with the 1995 Directive. Raynal was joined at the AmCham roundtable by Christian Pardieu, Head of Privacy Policy for GE in Europe.  Pardieu and Raynal agreed on the main topics that would be covered by the future EU reform package:

  • simplification of notification formalities;
  • the 'right to be forgotten';
  • accountability principle;
  • applicable law.
When discussing the accountability principle, Pardieu pointed out that corporations should receive a benefit from voluntarily implementing audit and other accountability measures, whereas Raynal said the CNIL did not view accountability as "trade-off" for other benefits.  For the CNIL, accountability is part of compliance with a data controller's legal obligations, although she said that accountability measures may not be appropriate for all kinds of businesses. Raynal concluded with a discussion on BCRs, including the new timeframes applicable to multi-jurisdictional applications, useful tips on drafting BCRs. The full summary of the AmCham meeting is available here: CNIL AmCham meeting on Revision of EU Privacy Directive Hogan Lovells partner Winston Maxwell co-chairs the AmCham's New Media, IT and Privacy Committee, which hosted this event.

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