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Germany, UK Data Privacy Alert - 17 August 2015


DIHT Criticizes Government Draft on the Introduction of Data Retention

In a recent statement, the German Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Deutscher Industrie- und Handelskammertag– DIHT) expressed doubts over the appropriateness of a governmental draft on the introduction of data retention in Germany.

The DIHT expressed its concerns that companies would again be over-burdened by onerous and impractical legal requirements and suggested a thorough re-examination of the current draft. The current draft obliges telecommunications providers to retain data such as

phone numbers, time and place of communication (except for emails) and IP addresses for between four and 10 weeks.

Download the German Chamber of Commerce statement (PDF) (in German)

Hamburg Data Protection Officer: Facebook is Not Allowed to Require Real Name of User

The Hamburg Data Protection Authority has ruled that Facebook must allow the pseudonymous use of its services following Facebook’s requirement for users to use their real name and provide a copy of their identity card.

Johannes Caspar, the Hamburg Commissioner for Data Protection, concluded that Facebook’s behaviour had breached German telemedia and identity card requirements. Equally, Caspar highlighted that as a result of Facebook conducting its business in Germany, it would have to comply with German law even though its company’s headquarters are based in Ireland.

Hamburg Data Protection Authority Press Release (PDF) (in German)

Voßhoff Warns Against Fitness Apps by Health Insurers

Andrea Voßhoff, the German Federal Privacy Commissioner, has reissued her warning against the use of health insurance models which allow customers to transmit their data to the insurer through “fitness apps” in order to receive benefits in return. Such apps may process sensitive personal data such as the heart rate, eating behaviour or the complete medical history of the patient, thus Voßhoff has suggested extending the higher data protection standards of statutory insurances to the private sector also.

BFDI article on Andrea Voßhoff statement (in German)


Dawson-Damer v Taylor Wessing LLP

An application under the Data Protection Act 1998 s.7(9) for an order requiring solicitors to comply with a subject access request was refused. Judge Behrens held that is was not reasonable or proportionate, in the circumstances, for the solicitors to carry out the necessary searches to determine which documents were protected by legal professional privileged and which were not.

Dawson-Damer & Ors v Taylor Wessing LLP & Ors [2015] EWHC 2366 (Ch) (06 August 2015)

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About this Author

Mark Gleeson, Data Protection, Privacy, attorney, Squire Patton Boggs law firm

Mark is a partner in London specialising in data protection, privacy and freedom of information.

Mark has considerable experience of advising leading private and public sector organisations, both nationally and internationally, on information law. He advises on both a compliance and strategic basis. 

He has advised on and managed a large number of multi-jurisdictional data projects. 

He has particular expertise in advising on the exploitation and monetisation of information including the use of data including behavioural and location information....

+44 20 7655 1465
Annette Demmel, Information Technology Attorney, Squire Patton Boggs Law Firm

Dr. Annette Demmel is a partner in our Data Privacy & Cybersecurity Practice Group in Berlin. For 20 years, Annette has advised national and international businesses in privacy law, technology law, telecommunications law, intellectual property law, media law and competition law.

In particular, she leads the implementation of privacy compliance programs and centralized software systems, and provides advice on policy and regulatory issues arising in the electronic communications and internet sectors. Annette also advises clients on legal issues relating to profiling and online marketing business models.

She often acts as an external data protection officer. She also represents our clients in both in court and out-of-court disputes, often in matters involving cross-country issues.

  • Advising a multinational company on the outsourcing of the group IT services; negotiations with local Works Councils regarding privacy and co-determination rights with regard to cloud services and centrally managed solutions.
  • Project management for a multinational company on the implementation of privacy compliance solutions involving newly acquired companies in 20+ countries.
  • Advising a major international advertising holding on business models based on profiling and behavioral targeting.
  • Implementing cloud-based HR solutions in various international groups in more than 40 countries; leading negotiations with local data protection authorities and Works Councils.
  • Providing ongoing monitoring and analysis for a global communications provider, covering a broad range of telecommunications regulatory and competition law issues, including BNetzA market reviews and implementation of SMP obligations, abuse of dominance proceedings, spectrum policy, net neutrality and e-privacy.
  • Advising a US-based marketing company with one of the world’s largest databases for consumer marketing on data protection and serving as an external data protection officer for their German enterprise.
  • Advising an international electronics group on legal aspects of data security and data breaches.
  • Moderating roundtable discussions for the social media strategy and implementation in one of the world's best-known companies.
  • Structuring innovative e-business and entertainment platforms, and advising on internet-related data protection issues.
  • Defending an architect's copyright on a striking, contemporary building in Germany.
  • Representing a former state-owned company in several judicial IT legal matters.
+49 30 72616 8226