Data

Data protection, privacy and new technologies

More of our everyday lives are online — both at work and home. Meanwhile, terror attacks intensify calls for more surveillance. Concerns grow over the safety of our privacy and personal data.

FRA helps lawmakers and practitioners protect your rights in a connected world.

Highlights

Products
26
January
2015
FRA was requested by the European Commission (EC) in January 2014 to provide practical guidance on the processing of Passenger Name Record (PNR) data for law enforcement purposes, in light of efforts by Member States to establish national PNR systems. As a result, in informal consultation with EC services and the European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS) and building on opinions FRA, the EDPS and the Article 29 Working Party on PNR, FRA presented twelve fundamental rights considerations to EU Member States experts at technical level.
9
July
2014
The EU and its Member States took a variety of important steps in 2013 to protect and promote fundamental rights by
assuming
new international commitments, revamping legislation and pursuing innovative policies on the ground. Yet, fundamental
rights violations seized the spotlight with distressing frequency: would‑be migrants drowning off the EU’s coast,
unprecedented mass surveillance, racist and extremist‑motivated murders, child poverty and Roma deprivation.
6
June
2014
This year’s FRA annual report looks at fundamental rights-related developments in asylum, immigration and integration; border control and visa policy; information society, respect for private life and data protection; the rights of the child and the protection of children; equality and non-discrimination; racism, xenophobia and related intolerance; access to justice and judicial cooperation; rights of crime victims; EU Member States and international obligations.
5
March
2014
This factsheet presents some examples of survey findings, which are placed alongside general considerations as possible ‘ways forward’ for responding to violence against women.
27
January
2014
This summary presents the FRA’s main research conclusions, which are published in full in Access to data protection remedies in EU Member States.
27
January
2014
Technological advances make it ever more important to safeguard the right to personal data, which is enshrined in the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union. Data protection violations arise principally from internet‑based activities, direct marketing and video surveillance, perpetrated by, for example, government bodies or financial and health institutions, research by the European Union Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA) shows.
5
June
2014
This handbook is designed to familiarise legal practitioners who are not specialised in the field of data protection with this area of law. It provides an overview of the EU’s and the CoE’s applicable legal frameworks.
3
December
2013
Police officers who ensure that people are able to exercise their fundamental rights and freedoms earn the respect and trust of the public. With this in mind, this manual sets out to foster such human rights-based police work by integrating human rights training into the heart of police training, in line with the European Union’s goals in the field of justice and home affairs.
18
June
2013
This year’s summary of the FRA Annual report – Highlights 2012 – puts the spotlight on key legal and policy developments in the field of fundamental rights in 2012.
18
June
2013
Against a backdrop of rising unemployment and increased deprivation, this FRA Annual report closely examines the situation of those, such as children, who are vulnerable to budget cuts, impacting important fields such as education, healthcare and social services. It looks at the discrimination that Roma continue to face and the mainstreaming of elements of extremist ideology in political and public discourse. It considers the impact the crises have had on the basic principle of the rule of law, as well as stepped up EU Member State efforts to ensure trust in justice systems.
9
October
2012
Data protection is an issue that affects a number of fundamental rights contained in the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the EU. This factsheet discusses some of the key points mentioned in the opinion.
9
October
2012
Following a request by the European Parliament on 5 September 2012 for an analysis of the fundamental rights issues associated with the proposed EU data protection reform package, FRA issued its opinion on the draft legislation on 1 October 2012.
20
June
2012
This year‘s summary of the FRA Annual report – Highlights 2011 – chronicles the positive developments made in 2011 as well as the challenges facing the EU and its Member States in the field of fundamental rights, drawing on objective, reliable and comparable socio-legal data.
11
October
2010
When a decision to stop an individual is motivated solely or mainly by virtue of a person's race, ethnicity or religion, this constitutes discriminatory ethnic profiling. Such practices can serve to alienate certain communities in the EU, and in turn can contribute to inefficient policing. The FRA guide aims to help the police address and avoid discriminatory ethnic profiling, and is designed to be used as a tool for more effective policing.
7
May
2010
The EU plays a pioneering role in the protection of personal data. The Charter of Fundamental Rights of the EU enshrines the right to data protection as an autonomous fundamental right. Despite the underlying importance and centrality of the right to data protection in the EU, many deficiencies are present in the data protection system. This study on data protection identifies deficiencies in the EU Member States.
20
June
2012
To secure and safeguard the fundamental rights of everyone in the European Union (EU), the EU and its 27 Member States pressed forward with a number of initiatives in 2011. This report chronicles the positive developments made in 2011 as well as the challenges facing the EU and its Member States in the field of fundamental rights.
15
June
2011
Upon request of the European Parliament, the FRA presented an expert opinion on the fundamental rights compliance of a proposal for a Directive on the use of Passenger Name Record (PNR) data for the prevention, detection, investigation and prosecution of terrorist offences and serious crime (COM(2011) 32 final). This was a follow-up request to the opinion of the FRA related to PNR from October 2008.
11
October
2010
When used as an investigation technique in the context of law enforcement, ethnic profiling is often referred to as “criminal profiling”. This type of profiling uses indicators such as physical features, appearance or behaviour to give a “suspect description”. Profiling becomes unlawful when it is discriminatory.
27
July
2010
"Body scanners" is a generic term used for a technology that is capable of detecting objects carried under clothes.
3
November
2009
On 16 October the Swedish Presidency presented a "draft of the Stockholm Programme" that is to be adopted at the EU summit in December 2009. Following this publication, the Fundamental Rights Agency has presented the following opinion paper "FRA Comments on the Presidency Draft Stockholm Programme" available for download below.
In policing and border management, officials increasingly use profiling to support their work. But is it always lawful? The European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights’ updated guide helps answer this question with tips on how to avoid unlawful profiling.
The Agency presented figures on cyber-stalking and cyber-harassment from its violence against women survey during a panel discussion on cybercrime against women and girls in Vienna on 26 November.
On 8 November, the Agency took part in the fourth meeting of the Commission’s High Level Expert on Artificial Intelligence, which took place in Brussels.
The Agency introduced its forthcoming Guide on Preventing Unlawful Profiling during a seminar for equality bodies on countering ethnic profiling. The seminar brought together members of the 28 EU Equality Bodies, civil society, and the Ontario Human Rights Commission and Court of Appeal.
The Agency hosted a round-table discussion at this year’s Web Summit 2018 in Lisbon, which took place from 5 to 8 November.
The Agency organised a panel discussion on transparency for detecting discrimination in artificial intelligence applications during the Amsterdam Privacy Conference on 7 October.
On 27 September, Microsoft hosted a Data Science and Law Forum in their Brussels office.
The Agency provided expert advice during an online seminar organised by the EU’s Law Enforcement Training Agency.
On 20 September, the Agency joined the second expert workshop on the European Investigation Order and digital forensics.
From 13 to 14 September, the Agency took part in the annual meeting of the Working Group on Asylum and Immigration established within the European Association of Administrative Judges.
On 6 September, the Agency held an information session in Athens on the EU data protection rules related to processing the personal data of third-country nationals entering Greece in an unauthorised manner.
EU plans to overhaul national identity documents by adding fingerprints and facial imagery could put EU citizens’ privacy and personal data at risk, finds the latest Opinion from the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights.
Long-term residents could find their sensitive personal data stored indefinitely, under new proposals for the EU’s Visa Information System (VIS). This poses privacy and data protection risks, according to latest Opinion from the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights.
On 27 June the Agency attended the first meeting of the Commission’s High Level Expert Group on Artificial Intelligence.
FRA’s Director outlined the EU’s pressing fundamental rights challenges during an exchange of views with the European Parliament’s Committee of the Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs Committee (LIBE) on 20 June in Brussels.
The European Migration Network held a conference on information and communication technologies in migration processes, in Krakow on 21 June.
The EU’s Network and Information Security Agency, ENISA, held its Annual Privacy Forum in Barcelona from 13 to 14 June where FRA introduced its project on Big Data, Artificial Intelligence and Fundamental Rights, as well as FRA’s focus paper on discrimination in data-supported decision making.
The Agency will introduce its project on Big Data, Artificial Intelligence and Fundamental Rights during ENISA’s Annual Privacy Forum in Barcelona on 13 and 14 June.
On 4 June, the Agency took part in the meeting of the Finnish Human Rights Delegation in Helsinki.
Nearly 60% of Europeans consider being old a disadvantage when looking for work. Societies often view older people as burdens. Too often we overlook the basic human rights of our older people. This year, the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) in its 2018 Fundamental Rights Report explores how a rights-based approach towards respect for older people is starting to happen.
The Agency will discuss findings from its report on ‘Surveillance by intelligence services: fundamental rights safeguards and remedies in the EU’ at the Swedish Ministry of Defence in Stockholm on 12 October.
The FRA Director will be a keynote speaker at the opening session of the OSCE’s 2018 Human Dimension Implementation Meeting (HDIM) which starts in Warsaw on 10 September.
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The FRA will attend the Octopus Conference on Cybercrime, organized by the Council of Europe in Strasbourg from 11th to 13th July 2018.
The Agency will join the European Commission’s high-level expert group on artificial intelligence.
Judge Robert Spano of the European Court of Human Rights and FRA will jointly present the 2018 edition of the handbook on European data protection law at a plenary meeting of the Council of Europe’s Consultative Committee of the Convention for the protection of individuals with regard to automatic processing of personal data (Convention 108+).
The Agency will take part in a meeting on the oportunities and risks of digitalisation for girls and boys in the areas of work covered by the network of EU Justice and Home Affairs Agencies.
The FRA Director will address speakers during a conference to mark the EU’s new data protection rules entering into force.
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The Agency’s surveillance report will be presented during the European Economic and Social Committee’s 2018 Civil Society Days, which takes place from 24 to 25 May in Brussels.
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This year the RightsCon Conference will take place in Toronto from 16 to 18 May.
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The Agency will take part in the annual conference of European Data Protection Authorities, ‘Data Protection, Better Together’.
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The Agency will present its privacy and data protection work during the 2018 Annual Conference on EU Data Protection Law, taking place in Brussels, between 19 and 20 April
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From 22 to 23 March, the Agency will host its third expert meeting on developing an online tool on EU Member States’ compliance with international human rights law and fundamental rights.
On 28 February, the Agency hosts an expert meeting with the objective of discussing the fundamental rights implications of big data.
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The Bulgarian Presidency of the EU will host a conference in Sofia form 20 to 21 February on the future of data on passenger name records - effective use and challenges.
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The Agency will take part in an expert workshop organised by the UN Office of the High Commissioner of Human Rights (OHCHR) on the right to privacy in the digital age.
The Agency will present its second report on surveillance by intelligence services on 16 February in Paris.
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FRA will host a panel discussion at the annual Computers, Privacy & Data Protection conference in Brussels on 26 January.
The Agency will present its second report on surveillance by intelligence services: fundamental rights safeguards and remedies in the EU to the High Level Expert Group on Internet Governance in Brussels, on 23 January.
The Italian Parliamentary Committee for the Intelligence and Security Services and for State Secret Control will hold a conference in Rome on 17 January on the Agency’s second surveillance report that was published in November 2017.
At the first meeting of the Terrorism Working Party of the Council of the European Union under Bulgarian presidency, the Agency will present its second report on ‘Surveillance by intelligence services: fundamental rights safeguards and remedies in the EU’.