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GDPR essentials

29 March 2017

The EU General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”) is probably to date one of the most lobbied legislation adopted by the EU since its creation.

After nearly four years of protracted negotiations, the Council of the European Union adopted, on the 8 April 2016, at first reading the data protection package constituted by the EU General Data Protection Regulation and the Directive for data protection in the police and justice sectors. On 12 April 2016, the European Parliament’s Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs Committee (the LIBE Committee) finally approved both texts paving the way for their publication in the Official Journal of the EU on 4th May 2016. The GDPR will enter into force on 25 May 2016 but it will only take effect for Member States by 2018, allowing for a two year transition period. Significantly different from the old regime, the GDPR will be directly applicable in all Member States, creating rights for all EU citizens to be relied upon without any need for implementing national legislation.

The Regulation introduces a single legal framework that applies across all EU member states. This change has been heralded as a major step towards a Digital Single Market and means that businesses will face a more consistent set of data protection compliance obligations from one EU Member State to the next...

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