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Working group to clarify storage obligation regarding electronic communications delivery reports

Working group to clarify storage obligation regarding electronic communications delivery reports

Press release 27.03.2017 10.43 fi sv en

The Ministry of Transport and Communications has instituted a working group to assess the legislation concerning the storage obligation with regard to electronic communications delivery reports.

The establishment of the working group is based on the verdict issued by the European Court of Justice in April 2014, in which the directive concerning the storage of EU electronic communications delivery reports was determined to be void and invalid. After the resolution of the European Court of Justice, the Constitutional Law Committee of the Finnish Parliament observed that the regulation affecting the storage of Finnish electronic communications-based data fulfilled the requirements of the implementation of fundamental rights. The Parliament nevertheless required that the regulation be assessed by a broadly based working group and that the implementation of fundamental rights be looked after by all available methods.

The assessment is also necessary because a resolution later issued by the European Court of Justice that further specifies requirements concerning the storage of information in the member nations. What this relates to is the resolution issued in December 2016 (Tele2 Sverige and Watson, etc.), by which the requirements for the storage of national electronic communications-based information and the legislation affecting information acquisition on the part of the authorities has become stricter.

The object of the assessment now being initiated is legislation that concerns the storage of electronic communications-based information in order to comply with the official requirements to clarify and prevent serious crime. The working group must also take note of the development of communications services in addition to the priority project with regard to streamlining the government’s regulations.

“It’s important to harmonise the responsibility of the communications intermediary for the implementation of privacy protection with the needs of the authorities to obtain information in individual cases,” states Anne Berner, Minister of Transport and Communications. At the same time she emphasises that from the perspective of the reliability of automated traffic and other such digital service formats, it is quite essential that users can better trust the confidentiality of communications than previously.

The task of the working group is to assess, among other things, current practices with regard to electronic communications-based delivery reports, as well as framework conditions connected with the confidentiality of communications, protection of privacy and fundamental rights related to other matters.

Timo Kievari, Director of Unit and Senior Adviser at the Ministry of Transport and Communications, functions as the chairperson of the working group. Experts from a broad variety of various ministries as well as other authorities, interest groups and telecommunications enterprises have been appointed as members of the working group.

The term of office for the working group is 20 March 2017 – 16 June 2017.

For more information, please contact:

Johanna Tuohino, Ministerial Adviser, tel. +358 (0)295 342018