Photo of Conor McEneaney

The Data Protection Commissioner, Helen Dixon, spoke at the Society for Computers and Law’s ‘The Evolution and Reform of Data Protection’ event this morning. The Commissioner gave an overview of the activities of the Office of the Data Protection Commissioner (ODPC) in 2014 and set out the aims of the ODPC for the year ahead.


Continue Reading Data Protection Commissioner reviews 2014 and sets out plans for 2015

Photo of Neasa Ni Ghrada

The Department of Education and Skills is currently creating an individualised database of primary school students; the Primary Online Database (POD). The POD will gather personal data and sensitive personal data about pupils, such as information about ethnic and cultural background, religion, medical conditions, students with special needs and students’ Personal Public Service Numbers (PPSN). The POD will be shared with other state bodies, including the Central Statistics Office, the Department of Social Protection, the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform and the Revenue Commissioners.


Continue Reading A permanent record (or at least until you turn 30)

Photo of John Whelan

There has been much debate during 2014 about the effectiveness of the US Safe Harbour regime. Many EU commentators have queried its effectiveness, pointing in particular to the lack of enforcement over the years by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the body which effectively is charged with dealing with complaints that companies are not in compliance with their public representations of adherence to the Safe Harbour principles.

Continue Reading SnapChat Signs Up to 20 Years of Data Protection Audits

Photo of Conor McEneaney

On November 23rd, Symantec, the American antivirus company, announced the discovery of a piece of software called Regin, which it had found lurking on computers and stealing data in Ireland, Russia, Saudi Arabia and several other countries. Its sophistication and stealth led Symantec to conclude that it must have been created by a nation-state.

The

Photo of Sinead Mitchell

According to a survey recently published by Microsoft, a large proportion of Irish people think that online privacy is important and that people should not need to give up privacy and freedom for safety from crime and terrorism.

The survey published by Microsoft, and carried out by Amárach Consulting, focused on Irish peoples’ attitudes toward online and digital data privacy and security. Microsoft commissioned the survey as part of its on-going legal challenge to a US warrant which compels Microsoft to produce data held in a Microsoft data centre in Dublin.


Continue Reading How important is online privacy?

Photo of Claire Morrissey

Great day today attending the Health Informatics Society of Ireland 2014 Annual Conference.  In our Data Protection for Healthcare workshop together with Sarah Reade, Lead ICT Project Manager, Saint John of God Hospitaller Ministries and Jim Gregg, Irish Computer Society, we had a lively discussion on the data protection challenges faced by medical practitioners in the context of research and access requests.


Continue Reading Health Informatics Society of Ireland 2014 Annual Conference

Photo of Conor McEneaney

Apple Pay: an Introduction

One of the most exciting elements of the Apple iPhone 6 launch in September was the announcement by Apple of the Apple Pay feature. Apple Pay is a near field communication (NFC) based mobile payment system that comes pre-installed on the iPhone 6. NFC technology involves a short-range, low power wireless link evolved from radio-frequency identification technology that can transfer small amounts of data between two devices held a few centimetres from each other. It is the same technology that is behind the ‘tap and pay’ debit cards that have been rolled out by Irish banks in the last number of years.

While Apple Pay was launched with the iPhone 6 in the US, it has not yet been rolled out in Europe with rumours predicting an Apple Pay European launch in 2015.

It is clear that Apple Pay has the potential to be a ground breaking technology that may change the way that consumers use their phones and, indeed, how consumers pay for goods and services.


Continue Reading Apple Pay – Challenges and Solutions

Photo of Davinia Brennan

The Office of the Data Protection Commissioner (ODPC) recently released the results of the second Global Privacy Sweep. Twenty-six privacy enforcement authorities, including Ireland, participated in the Sweep, which examined 1,211 apps. The theme of the Sweep, Mobile Privacy, was chosen due to many privacy enforcement authorities having identified mobile apps as a key area of focus in light of the privacy implications for customers.


Continue Reading Mobile Apps – Results of Global Privacy Sweep raise privacy concerns

Photo of Davinia Brennan

The Office of the Data Protection Commissioner (ODPC) recently released the results of the second Global Privacy Sweep. Twenty-six privacy enforcement authorities, including Ireland, participated in the Sweep, which examined 1,211 apps. The theme of the Sweep, Mobile Privacy, was chosen due to many privacy enforcement authorities having identified mobile apps as a key area

Photo of Conor McEneaney

Following the referral of the High Court to the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) in Schrems v Data Protection Commissioner (No.2) [2014] IEHC 351, as reported in two previous blogs, the plaintiff in that case, Max Schrems, has successfully signed up over 25,000 applicants to pursue a quasi "class action" suit against Facebook Ireland Limited in a civil case before the Commercial Court for Vienna.

The number of applicants was capped at 25,000 for practical reasons with the cap being reached within a week of its launch and as of Friday 8th August the number of applicants stood at over 45,000.


Continue Reading Class action suit launched against Facebook Ireland in Austria