The EU rights to privacy and personal data protection: 20 years in 10 questions

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The rights to privacy and to personal data protection, enshrined respectively in Art. 7 and 8 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union (EU) (hereafter, the ‘EU Charter’), have been particularly powerful in determining the evolution of EU law and policy over the last years. On their basis, the Court of Justice of the EU (CJEU) declared invalid the Data Retention Directive, advised against the conclusion of a negotiated agreement on the transfer of Passenger Name Record (PNR) data to Canada, and brought down the major legal instrument allowing for the transfer of personal data to the United States (US). The CJEU has also asserted, on the basis of Art. 7 and 8 EU Charter, the existence of rights in the hands of individuals in relation to data about them processed by search engines. Judgments such as Digital Rights, Schrems and Google Spain, but also the Court’s Opinion 1/15 on the PNR agreement between the EU and Canada, have demonstrated the importance of these two fundamental rights for EU law, also against the background of a continuously developing data- driven information society built on the massive of use of personal data.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages13
Publication statusPublished - May 2019


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