AmCham Workshop “Digital Market under EU legislative fire - The ePrivacy Regulation Proposal"
AmCham Bulgaria Initiates Proposals for Recommendation for E-Privacy Regulation
Sofia, 20 February 2018
Following its 2018 Priorities AmCham initiates a collection of proposals to address the upcoming EU Regulation Discussion regarding the adoption of the Electronic Privacy Regulation (EPR) late in the year. AmCham’s Digital Economy Committee organized a workshop aimed at understanding this new regulation. The event’s topic was “The ePrivacy Regulation Proposal in the context of the EU Digital Single Market Strategy: Purposes, context and possible effects”.
The workshop aimed at receiving a direct the input from the participants. The main apprehension in this stage of the policy draft so far is that the IT business sees the new Regulation as a new GDPR-scale calamity for the market. Thus both the speakers and the audience focused on what amendments are necessary in the current text of the ePR rroposal to allow the EU DSM Strategy to assist business, instead of hindering it.
Main speakers were Ms. Gergana Ilieva, and Mr. Lyuben Todev, Attorneys-at-Law, “Dobrev & Lyutskanov Law Firm” who outlined the general framework of the ePR, and gave practical insights regarding the regulation. The workshops was moderated by Ms. Iva Todorova, Digital Economy Committee Co-chair and AmCham Board member.
Mr. Petar Ivanov, Executive Director of AmCham Bulgaria gave significant input regarding the Annual Agenda of the Chamber in the field of the digital technologies, innovation, and data protection, and pointed out the importance of the topics of the IT Hub Connect, the technological and regulatory event jointly organized by AmCham Bulgaria and the Indian-Bulgarian Chamber of Commerce.
The main purpose of the workshop was to inform the AmCham members about the context of the introduction of the ePR, along with its possible effects on business. During the presentation Mr. Todev and Mrs. Ilieva described the legal framework in which the new regulation is being introduced. Since 2015 the establishment of the EU Digital Market Strategy gave significant benefits to end consumers, and opened new areas for new businesses and innovation in the Union. Its main pillars are better access for consumers and businesses to digital goods and services across Europe; creating the right conditions and a level playing field for digital networks and innovative services to flourish; maximising the growth potential of the digital economy. Its vastly proclaimed success stories so far are the diminishing of the roaming taxation and the establishment of the Network and Computer Systems Directive, as well as the establishment of the EU’s Network Agency (ENISA).
ePR comes with the ambition to regulate the protection of data of the legal entities, and steps on the legal basis that is already introduced in the GDPR. The data here includes those data generated by the end user and its device while connected in a digital network, as well as the data that are part of a virtual transaction, for example.
The challenges that businesses point out is that if the ePR includes the full range of proposed regulation areas, it might cause terminating of the innovation process in the digital sphere in the EU territory, and factual exclusion of the EU member states from the global digital transformation. Thus will lead to innovation weakness of the Union, as well as lacking of competitiveness in the global market. On the other hand, major digital companies and vendors might not see attractive to redraw their source codes to address the ePR, thus excluding app. 30% of the digital economy from their supply chain.
The participants of the workshop discussed various of related topics such as the foresight of personal data usage, the minimum interference and data processing no matter of the data volume, as well as achievement of minimal technical competences of the end users. Among the discussed topics were the “machine-to-machine” (M2M) regulation and the business and end users’ protection. Another hot topic for the audience was the data concession agreement and the variety of interpretation of the proposed texts in the ePR.
AmCham Bulgaria’s draft proposals regarding the e-Privacy Regulation include:
- Compliance with GDPR;
- Relaxed mode for low risk activities;
- Technical neutrality;
- Exception of the M2M communication from the ePR scope;
- Regulation of the transfer of information only – allowance of static data storage;
AmCham Bulgaria members are encouraged to share their recommendations regarding the e-Privacy Regulation. Suggestions should be sent via e-mail to email@example.com no later than February 28th, 2018. After collecting all the members’ input the Digital Economy Committee and the Board of Directors of AmCham Bulgaria will draft a Position Paper that will be presented to the respected institutions in Bulgaria and in the European Union.