Feeds

German privacy activists cry foul over data retention law

Data logging? Nein danke

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

Privacy activists have filed a constitutional complaint against Germany's data retention laws.

The objection against the German Telecomms Data Retention Act was filed in federal court on Monday by German privacy group Arbeitskreis Vorratsdatenspeicherung (Working Group on Data Retention). The group said 30,000 people have signed the objection against laws that mean German telecoms carriers are obliged to keep details of internet usage and phone call records for up to two years. The 150-page complaint calls on the court to suspend the law on the grounds of "apparent unconstitutionality".

Alongside its legal moves, Arbeitskreis Vorratsdatenspeicherung has published guidelines and recommendations designed to "safeguard individuals" against the obligatory logging of all telecommunications traffic. Arbeitskreis Vorratsdatenspeicherung argues that the data retention law treats all citizens as potential terrorists or delinquents. "The pervasive logging of communication patterns without reasonable suspicion resembled a serious encroachment upon the basic values of constitutional legality," it said.

Organisations and individuals that rely on confidentiality to do their work - lawyers, journalists and even crisis lines - are deprived of free and open communication because of the data logging, the group claims.

Governments across Europe brought in the measures, which backers argue are necessary in the fight against terrorism and organised crime. Critics argue blanket data retention is disproportionate.

Arbeitskreis Vorratsdatenspeicherung's objections are explained in greater depth here (in German). The group's stance is backed by 47 German non-governmental organisations. ®

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Just TWO climate committee MPs contradict IPCC: The two with SCIENCE degrees
'Greenhouse effect is real, but as for the rest of it ...'
Adam Afriyie MP: Smart meters are NOT so smart
Mega-costly gas 'n' 'leccy totting-up tech not worth it - Tory MP
'Blow it up': Plods pop round for chat with Commonwealth Games tweeter
You'd better not be talking about the council's housing plans
Arrr: Freetard-bothering Digital Economy Act tied up, thrown in the hold
Ministry of Fun confirms: Yes, we're busy doing nothing
ONE EMAIL costs mining company $300 MEEELION
Environmental activist walks free after hoax sent share price over a cliff
Help yourself to anyone's photos FOR FREE, suggests UK.gov
Copyright law reforms will keep m'learned friends busy
Apple smacked with privacy sueball over Location Services
Class action launched on behalf of 100 million iPhone owners
UK government officially adopts Open Document Format
Microsoft insurgency fails, earns snarky remark from UK digital services head
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.