back to article Eurocrats recommend right to sue American companies over snooping

The European Commission is calling for better protection of its citizens' data, against intrusion by American agencies like the NSA. According to Reuters, the commission wants European citizens to have the right to sue in America over misuse of their data – something the US has promised but not yet implemented. The report …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    You can sue anyone

    Well most anyone except governments. Just because you can sue doesn't mean you can collect anything even if you received a favorable judgment - if you can actually sue.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: You can sue anyone

      No, the principle is wrong. Making it possible to sue someone is simply walking away from the problem and only allowing people with money to go after abuse. IMHO, some of this must be criminalised. That's not THAT much better (at least based on my experience with Met Police which only seems to be interested in crime if it makes headlines), but it puts the costs where it belongs: a state that doesn't get its laws right.

  2. Khaptain Silver badge

    Alternative solution - Much cheaper

    How about the Americans stop snooping in the first place... there solved.

    When you have muppets like Cameron et al that are happy to share our data with the Yanks then there is no point in suing anyone. The yank lawyer would just turn round and say that they had permission form GCHQ or other European agency anyway.......

    Sounds more like a lawyers wet dream than anyhing even remotely serious.

  3. John Smith 19 Gold badge

    The US (and Israel for that matter) are viewed as offering *equatl* data protection as the EU

    Perhaps those views should also be reviewed.

    1. Bluenose

      Re: The US (and Israel for that matter) are viewed as offering *equatl* data protection as the EU

      Actually the US is not seen as offering "equal" data protection. Only companies listed on the US Safe Harbour scheme as seen as having in place business polices and rules that provide an adequate level of data protection. If they are not list on the Safe Harbour scheme then they are not approved by the EU.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The US (and Israel for that matter) are viewed as offering *equatl* data protection as the EU

      For all practical purposes the US political establishment can be considered an arm of the Israeli Foreign Ministry.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The US (and Israel for that matter) are viewed as offering *equatl* data protection as the EU

      I think we should start with being able to get as much data from US travellers as the EU has to give to the US on inbound. Secondly, I think every single US politician should be fitted with a Google Glass so that we can track every second of their life. EU appointed data stalkers will then also gather the stuff GG misses (as it only looks outwards), and of course, we should be able to listen in to any call if we so choose. Yes, just like that, pesky stuff like warrants should not be needed - after all, that's what they use to access EU data too.

      No? Well, then you may as well f*ck off, because I will do everything I can to thwart and pollute and data collection. CICO (crap in, crap out) principles apply.

      Oh, and stop Unsafe Harbor. Really, that was a joke from the start. It's not safe, and there's no water.

  4. Anonymous Coward

    Letter from the US of A.

    Dear U-Rope.

    Ya'll go fuck yourselves now. D'ya hear?

    Yours. America.



    Good look with this little endeavour.

    USA stop snooping? HAHAHAHAH...

  5. Bluenose

    National Security - oh in that case Data Protection can be ignored!

    This call from Reding just proves how little people actually know about the law. If Reding actually discussed this idea with someone knowledgeable before going to the press then they would know the following:

    There has to be damage before you can claim; just because someone collects your data does not actually cause you damage or loss therefore no claim.

    EU data protection law has a National Security clause carveout; no claim as the US would no doubt seek to use that carve out as a defence.

    As for the inability of European citizens being able to make a claim, like the American people can, well a quick check of the US constitution and the legal parameters around the NSA, CIA etc all show that they are not allowed to spy on American citizens, do we really think that they will agree a law that say they won't spy on European citizens?

    Finally, the EU seems to be ignoring the fact that, to the best of my knowledge, no European country actually allows their citizens to sue them for doing exactly what the US is accused of. Perhaps putting the EU house in order might be a better approach than getting all het up over the American legal system.

    1. Dan 55 Silver badge

      Re: National Security - oh in that case Data Protection can be ignored!

      Perhaps she said what she said because she knows exactly how little people know about the law. Soundbites are cheap.

  6. Tony Paulazzo

    I bet the NSA and FBI have shitloads of data on Viviane Reding, she's just so outspoken, and usually on the peoples side. Man I wished she were running the British government - she'd tell GCHQ to tell the NSA to FUCK OFF AND DIE!

    Not anonymous as... well, what's the point really.

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