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European ePrivacy Regulation obliges companies to be proactive in data processing

| Events | Privacy, IT & Digital Business

Andersen Tax & Legal and Innovation Club of the Valencian Community Conference

The future European ePrivacy Regulation obliges companies to adapt all their electronic communications and be proactive in the processing of data to protect the user and allow him/her to be the effective owner of their information.

Isabel Martínez Moriel, Senior Associate of Andersen Tax & Legal and head of the Privacy area, IT & Digital Business, spoke at the round table discussion about “New game rules for commercial communications: Future European ePrivacy Regulation”, organised in Valencia by Andersen Tax & Legal and the Innovation Club of the Valencian Community (CICV), inaugurated by Ignacio Aparicio, Partner of the Mercantile area of Andersen Tax & Legal, and Juan Manuel Baixauli, President of the CICV, and with the participation of Fabián de Castro, Business Manager of Zenithbr Media.

During the day, it was pointed out that the proposal for a European ePrivacy Regulation, published by the European Commission and pending approval by the European Parliament, will be directly applicable in all EU Member States and concerns both natural persons holding the data and B2B relations. The rule aims to ensure consistency with the European Data Protection Regulation, with which it shares fines amounting to EUR 20 million or 4% of overall turnover.

During her speech, Isabel Martínez Moriel argued that the ePrivacy Regulation applies to all electronic communications data and introduces a stricter consent for digital advertising, to which any European or non-European company that directs its services to EU citizens and has access to personal data and metadata must be subject to.

The head of the Privacy, IT & Digital Business area stressed the adaptations that will be made to the treatment of data, the need to create databases for the distinct functionalities and the obligation to review and update the user's consent clearly and concisely explaining the purpose of the use of their own data.

"The interests of the users change so that the information offered by a cookie or the preferences that a user shows at a given moment may be out of date", said Martínez Moriel, who asserted at this point that "updating the user's consent allows us to have a greater knowledge of the profiles to carry out a more efficient and personalised marketing campaign".

In this regard, Andersen Tax & Legal's head of Privacy, IT & Digital Business pointed out that data-based advertising is 500% more effective and must now adapt to the new principles of transparency, proactive responsibility and expressed consent and new protocols for data security, registration and evaluation and the incorporation of the figure of the Data Protection Delegate. She also pointed to new user rights, such as the right to be forgotten, the right to number portability, not to be subject to automated decisions based on profiles and the right of processing limitation.

Throughout the day, the anti-spam regulation and the possible harm it may cause to the general interest of free access to information was evaluated too, given the advertising operators’ and publishers’ responses.

Fabián de Castro has also expressed this view, considering that too rigid requirements in the norm "could imply a return to the Pleistocene age of digital communication", although he has maintained that the correct regulation allows to avoid abusive behaviour of advertisers to be avoided and to make an efficient use of the resources that benefit companies and users.

For his part, Ignacio Aparicio stressed that the new European Regulations on Data Protection and ePrivacy require a culture of active compliance by the company, which must establish previous measures and protocols. "Compliance has come to stay and proper adaptation helps improve the company's security to avoid fines and reputational risks."

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