ISP Wants European Commission To Take Action Against Sweden For Refusing To Halt Data Retention

from the good-luck-with-that dept

Back in April, Mike wrote about the decision of the Swedish ISP Bahnhof to delete all user log files in the wake of the judgment from the EU Court of Justice that the present EU data retention requirements are “invalid“. According to an article in Computerworld UK, Bahnhof did this with the permission of the Swedish Post and Telecom Authority (PTS), which agreed that the Swedish law implementing data retention was problematic. However:

in mid-August the PTS ordered Bahnhof to start retaining data again, Bahnhof CEO Jon Karlung said. The PTS has made a 180-degree turn in policy by ordering Bahnhof — and Tele2, which also stopped retaining data for a while — to resume doing so.

According to a PTS spokesman, it was the government that ordered the PTS to start enforcing the Swedish data retention law again. “They appointed a commissioner to investigate if the Swedish national legislation could still be applied” despite the CJEU’s ruling, he said. The commissioner came to the conclusion that the national legislation stands, and from that point on, the PTS has been enforcing the law again, he said.

Bahnhof is not only fighting this reversal of policy in the Swedish courts, but also calling on the European Union to take action against the Swedish government for its refusal to halt data retention:

Bahnhof, the renowned Swedish network operator and internet carrier joins forces with 5th of July Foundation to urge the EU Commission to initiate proceedings against the Kingdom of Sweden for blatantly ignoring the judgment of the Court of Justice of the European Union on April 8, 2014, which declared the Data Retention Directive invalid. Sweden now fails to fulfil its obligations according to The Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, articles 7 and 8, ?Respect for private and family life? and ?Protection of personal data?.

It’s rather a long shot, since the European Commission has given no indication it wants to get rid of data retention, and so is unlikely to help Bahnhof in its battle with the Swedish authorities. Still, it’s nice change to have an ISP willing to stand up for its users time and again, as Bahnhof has done; long may it continue to do so.

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Comments on “ISP Wants European Commission To Take Action Against Sweden For Refusing To Halt Data Retention”

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Anonymous Coward says:

Sweden isn’t the only country that has ignored the EU ruling on data retention. the UK has done the same and if i remember correctly, is being taken to the EU court. however, i wouldn’t mind betting a dollar that even if the courts vote to enforce the ruling, countries will still carry on collecting and sorting through the data simply because all governments now seem to think it is their right to know what all citizens, everywhere are doing, while at the same time keeping as much information on as many things as possible away from the citizens, the majority of which aid corporations! in other words, the planet is facing a take-over like it has never seen before an if it succeeds, we will all be run by massive corporations, with absolutely no rights at all. we are on the way to this end and it is being aided even now by turning countries into ones that are Police and Authoritarian run!

Hephaestus (profile) says:

Re: Re:

It is highly unlikely that corporations will take over. Short and long term, most technology is headed away from having central authorities and middlemen, information, banking, energy, water, food, manufacturing are just a few on a very long list. On top of that, deflationary economic pressure, from falling energy prices and manufacturing costs, pretty much wreck governmental central authorities over the next 20-25 years as their tax revenues dry up.

Whatever (profile) says:

Re: Re:

This is in the end one of those issues which is likely to split the EU. It goes to the very nature of the state and it’s ability to decide how it deals with it’s citizens and their privacy. The EU is effectively a one way ratchet up system of more and more privacy to the point of nearly making it illegal for the cops to even observe on the street and take notes.

The right to forget is just a wonderful example of this insane move to a level of privacy that could only be obtained by actually removing part of people’s memory.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

In the UK they passed a law ( Data Retention and Investigatory Powers or DRIP) that is basically a band-aid that keeps the old law legal until the new directive from the EU is finalized. Oh and as expected expands the invalidated laws reach.
Can’t find the status of the different reported challenges to it. There were at least 3 different groups going to court over it.

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