Ireland acting as ‘bottleneck’ for GDPR enforcement

Ireland acting as 'bottleneck' for GDPR enforcement

Dr Johnny Ryan

Ireland is “the GDPR’s worst bottleneck” and contributing to Europe’s “enforcement paralysis” when it comes to data protection, the Irish Council for Civil Liberties (ICCL) has concluded in a report submitted to the EU’s justice commissioner.

The report warns that Ireland has failed to send draft decisions to its European colleagues on 98 per cent of major EU-wide cases for which it is responsible, with the notable exception of the recent WhatsApp decision which involved a €225 million fine.

Dr Johnny Ryan, the ICCL’s senior fellow and author of the report, said: “This makes it impossible to uphold data rights and police how Google, Facebook, Apple, and Microsoft use people’s data across Europe.”

The report points out that Spain’s data protection agencies issues 10 times as many decisions as Ireland’s Data Protection Commission (DPC) despite having a significantly smaller budget.

The ICCL has called on the Irish government to reform and strengthen the DPC, including by appointing two additional data protection commissioners, as previously recommended by the Oireachtas justice committee.

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