Data Retention Directive declared invalid by European Court of Justice

On April 8, 2014 the European Court of Justice declared invalid Directive 2006/24/EC (“Data Retention Directive”) on the retention of data generated or processed in connection with the provision of publicly available electronic communications or public communications networks. The directive establishes that providers must retain traffic and location data as well as related data necessary to identify the subscriber or user.
While acknowledging the importance of allowing “competent national authorities to have possible access to those data” to fight organized crime and terrorism and ultimately to foster public security, the Court cites the principle of proportionality, which “requires that acts of the EU institutions be appropriate for attaining the legitimate objectives pursued by the legislation … and do not exceed the limits of what is appropriate and necessary in order to achieve those objectives.” The Court held that by adopting the Data Retention Directive, the “the EU legislature has exceeded the limits imposed by compliance with the principle of proportionality,” that the Directive interferes with the fundamental rights of respect for private life and data protection, and therefore it must be declared invalid. See Judgment 8 April 2014 in Joined cases C-293/12 and C-594/12.

Applicable Law: Directive 2006/24/EC

The full text of the judgments is available at: http://curia.europa…

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The full text of the related News Press is available at http://curia.europa…

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