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IT/IP Round Up – Autumn 2011

Published Autumn 2011

Latest IT/IP News – Autumn 2011

Data Retention Directive
The European Data Protection Supervisor (the “EDPS”) has published its opinion on the European Commission’s Evaluation Report on the Data Retention Directive (the “Directive”). The Directive, which came into force in May 2006, was intended to harmonise national legislation governing the retention of data. It requires all providers of electronic communication services to store traffic and location data of communications for use by national law enforcement agencies and was in response to the major terrorist attacks in Madrid in 2004 and London in 2006. The EDPS concluded that not only has “the Directive failed to harmonise national legislation”, it “does not meet the rights to privacy and data protection as:

  • the necessity of data retention (as provided in the Directive) has not been sufficiently demonstrated;
  • data retention could have been regulated in a less privacy-intrusive way; and
  • the Directive lacks foreseeability”.

We shall wait with baited breath as to what extent (if any) the European Commission implements the EDPS’s opinion particularly as the EDPS suggests the repealing of the Directive as an option. To view the EDPS’s opinion.

New Strategy for IP rights
The European Commission has published its strategy on Intellectual Property Rights in its snappily titled “A Single Market for Intellectual Property Rights” communication. In it the Commission sets out its detailed plans for the next few years to deliver a unified structure for the protection and commercial exploitation of Intellectual Property Rights. The strategy is part of the Commission’s bigger Europe 2020 strategy and its focus is on utilising Intellectual Property Rights and initiatives to aid the EU’s economic growth.

We shall provide further updates on this as and when the various elements of the strategy are implemented or come to fruition.

Following this communication, the Commission has published the draft counterfeit-goods regulations and the Commission’s proposals for a unified EU patent.

The draft counterfeit-goods regulations set out the procedure for Customs to follow in relation to goods that are suspected of infringing Intellectual Property Rights, streamlining the procedure for destroying counterfeit or pirated goods.

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