EC changes data rules for air passengers

Same content, different legal basis

The European Commission has adopted two changes to the way it gives information about plane passengers to US authorities.

The Transfer of Passenger Name Records and allows for US authorities to get access to information about airline passengers.

At the end of May the European court ruled that existing procedures were illegal.

The court has no problem with the content of the agreement but with its legal basis - the directive which allowed for the transfer is not meant to be used for security purposes.

The court recomends the commission renegotiates the agreement with the US.

Nothing will change until 30 September, by when the commission hopes to have sorted out a new agreement. That agreement will then last until November 2007 when a new reciprocal agreement is due.

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