Data Retention in Portugal: Big Brother is (No Longer) Watching
Forthcoming in Inês Quadros e Miguel Gorjão-Henriques, Springer, 2023
43 Pages Posted: 4 Oct 2022 Last revised: 17 Sep 2023
Date Written: April 4, 2023
The law implementing the most privacy-invasive instrument ever adopted by the European Union was enforced in the Portuguese legal order until the ruling of the Portuguese Constitutional Court of 19 April 2022. The general and indiscriminate retention of data by providers of electronic communications services and subsequent access thereto by public authorities was allowed to stand eight years into the landmark Digital Rights Ireland ruling of the Court of Justice that annulled the contentious Data Retention Directive. This article traces back this massive breach of the fundamental rights of almost the entire Portuguese population to a systemic failure of all relevant national stakeholders in the executive, legislative and judicial branches.
Keywords: Data retention; privacy; data protection; terrorism; Portuguese Constitutional Court.
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