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EU PNR: missed opportunity to end unlimited data collection

The ALDE Group regrets that the report on the proposal for a directive on an EU PNR, which was voted this afternoon in the Civil liberties committee, does not contain a good balance between security and privacy.

Speaking after the vote, Sophie in 't Veld, ALDE Group first vice-president and ALDE spokesperson for data protection, said:  "There was a good ALDE proposal on the table for targeted, risk based use of passenger data. It would have reconciled the aims of security and fundamental rights, and it would have aligned the use of PNR with recent case law banning unlimited, indiscriminate data collection of all passengers, without any suspicion."
Our laws require that any collection of personal data must be necessary and proportional. Last year's ruling of the Court of Justice has been ignored. The Court stated that mass and indiscriminate collection of data, without due cause, is not allowed.

However, ALDE welcomes mandatory information sharing, a proposal the ALDE group has been repeatedly asking for.

In 't Veld added: " We have been calling for better cooperation between police and intelligence services for the last years. Member states do have sometimes information about perpetrator of attacks but do not share it with other member states. Mandatory information sharing will be key to strengthen the police and intelligence services' fight.

ALDE worked hard for an EU PNR that meets the EU's own standards, and we were supportive of a scheme that is necessary and proportionate. The current text does bring neither greater security, nor greater protection of fundamental rights.

It is a shame that a majority in the Civil Liberties Committee voted against this proposal. This vote leaves it - once again - to the courts to ensure the protection of fundamental rights and the rule of law".