Feeds

German privacy activists cry foul over data retention law

Data logging? Nein danke

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

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. ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Facebook, Apple: LADIES! Why not FREEZE your EGGS? It's on the company!
No biological clockwatching when you work in Silicon Valley
'Cowardly, venomous trolls' threatened with TWO-YEAR sentences for menacing posts
UK government: 'Taking a stand against a baying cyber-mob'
Doctor Who's Flatline: Cool monsters, yes, but utterly limp subplots
We know what the Doctor does, stop going on about it already
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
Arab States make play for greater government control of the internet
Nerds told to get lost in last-minute power grab bid at UN meeting
Zippy one-liners, broken promises: Doctor Who on the Orient Express
Series finally hits stride, but Clara's U-turn is baffling
Don't bother telling people if you lose their data, say Euro bods
You read that right – with the proviso that it's encrypted
Apple SILENCES Bose, YANKS headphones from stores
The, er, Beats go on after noise-cancelling spat
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.