The Political and Judicial Life of Metadata: Digital Rights Ireland and the Trail of the Data Retention Directive

CEPS Liberty and Security in Europe Papers No. 65

17 Pages Posted: 5 Jun 2014

See all articles by Elspeth Guild

Elspeth Guild

Radboud University Nijmegen - Faculty of Law; Kingsley Napley - Department of Immigration; The British Institute of International and Comparative Law; London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE)

Sergio Carrera

Centre for European Policy Studies

Date Written: May 29, 2014

Abstract

This paper examines the challenges facing the EU regarding data retention, particularly after the judgment Digital Rights Ireland by the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) of April 2014, which found the Data Retention Directive 2002/58 to be invalid. It first offers a brief historical account of the Data Retention Directive and then moves to a detailed assessment of what the judgment means for determining the lawfulness of data retention from the perspective of the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights: what is wrong with the Data Retention Directive and how would it need to be changed to comply with the right to respect for privacy?

The paper also looks at the responses to the judgment from the European institutions and elsewhere, and offers three main recommendations to EU policy-makers: first, to give priority to a full and independent evaluation of the value of the data retention directive; second, to assess the judgment’s implications for other large EU information systems and proposals that provide for the mass collection of metadata from innocent persons, in the EU; and third, to adopt without delay the proposal for Directive COM(2012)10 dealing with data protection in the fields of police and judicial cooperation in criminal matters.

Keywords: EU, data retention, Digital Rights Ireland, Data Retention Directive

Suggested Citation

Guild, Elspeth and Carrera, Sergio, The Political and Judicial Life of Metadata: Digital Rights Ireland and the Trail of the Data Retention Directive (May 29, 2014). CEPS Liberty and Security in Europe Papers No. 65. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2445901

Elspeth Guild (Contact Author)

Radboud University Nijmegen - Faculty of Law ( email )

Postbus 9049
6500 KK Nijmegen
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024-3611423 (Fax)

Kingsley Napley - Department of Immigration ( email )

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London EC1M 4AJ
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+44 (0)20 7814 1200 (Phone)
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The British Institute of International and Comparative Law ( email )

Charles Clore House
17 Russell Square
London WC1B 5JP
United Kingdom

London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE)

Houghton Street
London, WC2A 2AE
United Kingdom

Sergio Carrera

Centre for European Policy Studies ( email )

1 Place du Congres
B-1000 Brussels, 1000
Belgium
+32 2 229 39 26 (Phone)

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