Protection of privacy and personal data form the core of safeguarding who you are as an individual; how you choose to live your life, who you spend your time with, your family relations and friends, what you like and consume. They also form the core of your right and ability to make autonomous, uninfluenced choices - whether political, economic, or social. Safeguarding privacy and protection of personal data are also absolute necessities for a functioning, healthy democracy.
In short, you as an individual must be able to decide whether or not you want to share your personal data, for what purpose, who has access to it, for how long and what can be done with it. You must also be able to access, modify or delete some of this information, and more.
Our Group has been at the forefront of pushing for a progressive, protective legal framework on data protection, totally overhauling the EU data protection framework. We heavily influenced the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and ensured the creation of a common data protection framework for the EU law enforcement sector for the first time in EU history.
However, our work is far from done. Online, and on social media in particular, where vast amounts of personal data are shared and transferred around the globe instantaneously, it is increasingly difficult for people to control their privacy. Everything you do online, whether through your personal computer, or your mobile devices - such as your smartphone, tablet, connected appliances, smart meters and even your car - leaves an electronic print, a mark that can be stored, recorded, aggregated and used for big data analysis and machine learning, producing ever more accurate profiles and predictions about you. This is where privacy protection comes in.
Our Group has been the leading voice in the fight for your privacy rights. It is our clear position that you should be in control of who can track you and your movements both on- and offline, whether it is through browser cookies or physically tracking the location of your phone or other mobile devices. We believe that individuals should be in control of who can access their communications and for what purpose, know with whom they are communicating, how often and for how long, regardless of whether it is a phone call, text message or through social media. The S&D Group is driving a progressive ePrivacy reform, where we hope to give people back control over their privacy online, while also showing businesses the benefits of offering privacy-friendly services to drive innovation and market share.