Overhaul of EU data protection rules needed Reding

Viviane Reding

European Commission vice president Viviane Reding

European Commission vice president Viviane Reding said today that one single set of data protection rules for Europe will make the digital single market work for the tech giants and help drive economic growth.

“This will be central to making Ireland even more welcoming for business,” she said, speaking in Dublin today.

“65pc of Irish citizens are worried about the way companies handle their personal data. People need to have control over their data. After all, their data belong to them.”

Responding to developments in the use of the internet for social and business needs, the Commission has proposed an overhaul of EU data protection rules.

Ireland will have a key role in negotiations: it is home to many tech giants and Ireland also takes over the six-month stewardship of the European Union in January 2013.

Reding put forward an overhaul of the EU data protection rules to bring them into the modern age last January.

The changes will give people more control over their personal data and make it easier to access, correct or delete their data. Personal information should be protected – no matter where it is sent or stored – even outside the EU, as may often be the case on the internet.

The Commission is also proposing a ‘one-stop-shop’ for data protection that will make Europe – and Ireland – an even more attractive place in which to do business.

This will do away with the present costly arrangement in which companies have to deal with 27 different regulators. And it means that unnecessary reporting requirements for companies will also be removed. Overall, the reform is expected to save businesses in Europe €2.3 billion a year.