EDPS response to the COVID-19 outbreak
'The outbreak of Covid-19 is affecting our lives at an unprecedented pace. It is testing the resilience of our societies as we respond to this global crisis and try to contain its consequences, both in the short and in the long run'.
Wojciech Wiewiórowski, European Data Protection Supervisor
Covid-19 outbreak is also testing fundamental rights to data protection and privacy. EU Member States, EU institutions and Big Tech companies are trying to explore solutions to tackle the uncontrolled spread of the virus.
In the past weeks, contact tracing apps and data localisation have become a constant topic in the political agenda of the Union. Such technologies may have strong consequences on EU citizens’ lives and lead to growing inequalities.
The EDPS is cooperating with the EU institutions and the European Data Protection Board to ensure fundamental rights to be respected.
As a result, we established a Covid-19 task force to follow developments and to prepare for the future of data protection and privacy after Covid-19 crisis.
EDPS activities and action plan
In response to the COVID-19 outbreak, the EDPS has decided to activate its Business Continuity Plan. All EDPS staff have been teleworking as of 13 March 2020.
Since 8 June, while teleworking is still considered the norm, part of the EDPS staff can return to the office on a voluntary basis.
Read more below
- EDPB Response to Ms Scarafia's letter regarding Amazon and COVID-19 (19/05/2020)
- EDPB Statement on the processing of personal data in the context of reopening of borders following the COVID-19 outbreak (16/06/2020)
- EDPB Statement on the data protection impact of the interoperability of contact tracing apps (16/06/2020)
- EDPB Statement on restrictions on data subject rights in connection to the state of emergency in Member States (02/06/2020)
- EDPB Response to the MEP Sophie in't Veld's letter on the use of apps in fight against coronavirus (24/04/2020)
- EDPB response to Mrs Ďuriš Nicholsonová and Mr Jurzyca's letter on common guidance in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemics (24/04/2020)
- EDPB Guidelines on processing of health data for research purposes and on geolocalisation and tracing tools (22/04/2020)
- EDPB Guidelines on the use of location data and contact tracing tools in the context of the COVID-19 outbreak (21/04/2020)
- EDPB Letter concerning the European Commission's draft Guidance on apps supporting the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic (14/04/2020)
- Global Privacy Assembly resources COVID-19
The outbreak of Covid-19 is affecting our lives at an unprecedented pace. It is testing the resilience of our societies as we respond to this global crisis and try to contain its consequences, both in the short and in the long run.
When we started our work on the Strategy for the five-year mandate of the European Data Protection Supervisor, one of the first issues we discussed was whether it should be either a living document, ready to be changed or adjusted, or a robust, future-proof plan.