In a news statement issued by the European Parliament at 1.12pm (European Time):
New EU data protection rules which aim to give citizens back control of their personal data and create a high, uniform level of data protection across the EU fit for the digital era was given their final approval by MEPs on Thursday. The reform also sets minimum standards on use of data for policing and judicial purposes.
Parliament’s vote ends more than four years of work on a complete overhaul of EU data protection rules.
The reform will replace the current data protection directive, dating back to 1995 when the internet was still in its infancy, with a general regulation designed to give citizens more control over their own private information in a digitised world of smartphones, social media, internet banking and global transfers.
“The general data protection regulation makes a high, uniform level of data protection throughout the EU a reality. This is a great success for the European Parliament and a fierce European ‘yes’ to strong consumer rights and competition in the digital age. Citizens will be able to decide for themselves which personal information they want to share”, said Jan Philipp Albrecht (Greens, DE), who steered the legislation through Parliament.
“The regulation will also create clarity for businesses by establishing a single law across the EU. The new law creates confidence, legal certainty and fairer competition”, he added.
The new rules include provisions on:
- a right to be forgotten,
- “clear and affirmative consent” to the processing of private data by the person concerned,
- a right to transfer your data to another service provider,
- the right to know when your data has been hacked,
- ensuring that privacy policies are explained in clear and understandable language, and
- stronger enforcement and fines up to 4% of firms’ total worldwide annual turnover, as a deterrent to breaking the rules.
Further information available: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/news
For the FINAL TEXT from the European Parliament (not yet posted at 12.30BST) check out: