European Union Parliament Makes Progress On Adopting Proposed EU Data Protection Regulation

Author:Mr Jeremy Mittman
Profession:Proskauer Rose LLP

On October 21, a key European parliamentary committee (the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs ("Committee") approved an amended version of the draft EU Data Protection Regulation, paving the way for further negotiations with EU governmental bodies.  The goal, according to a press release by the Committee, is to reach compromise on the draft agreement and a vote prior to the May 2014 EU Parliamentary elections.  The proposed legislation (which passed in a 51-1 vote) contains a number of key concepts, including: Right to Erasure: Stronger than the previously worded "Right to be Forgotten", the proposed legislation contains a "Right to Erasure", whereby a data subject would have the right to ask any entity holding personal data on that data subject to erase the personal data upon request.  Moreover, if the personal data has been "replicated" with other entities, the data controller to whom the request has been made must forward the request to the other entities it has transferred the data subject's personal data to. Increased Sanctions:   The Committee voted to increase the amount of penalties that could be levied for companies that violate the rules.  Whereas previously the proposal was penalties up to 1 million euros or 2% of worldwide annual turnover revenue of the company, the Committee ratcheted up the proposed penalties to 100 million euros or up to 5% of annual worldwide revenue, whichever is greater—a significant increase that illustrates the potentially expensive consequences of violating the data protection legislation. Data transfers to non-EU countries:    Specifically referencing the June...

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