Council Regulation 2725/2000 of 11 December 2000 (pdf) establishes a system known as "Eurodac", i.e. a fingerprint database that assists the asylum procedure. It mainly helps to determine which Member State is competent for asylum applications (see Council Regulation 407/2002 (pdf) laying down certain rules to implement Regulation 2725/2000 concerning the establishment of "Eurodac" for the comparison of fingerprints for the effective application of the Dublin Convention).
The system consists of a central unit, a computerised central database for comparing the fingerprint data of asylum applicants, and means of data transmission between the Member States and the central database. The EDPS is responsible for supervision of the system in cooperation with the competent national data protection authorities.
Read more on the supervision of Eurodac
When a participating country sends a set of prints to Eurodac, it knows immediately if they match up with others already on the database. If so, it can choose to send the individual back to the country where he or she first arrived or applied for asylum; the authorities there are responsible for making a decision about the candidate’s right to stay. If not, the country that submitted the prints handles the case.
Read more on the Commission's Freedom, Security and Justice website
The European Conference of data protection authorities of EU Member States and other European countries meets every year in spring. The Conference takes stock of important developments and usually adopts resolutions. The Conference set up the Working Party on Police and Justice, an advisory body on data protection in these areas.
Read more on the European Conference
The European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS) is an independent supervisory authority established in accordance with Regulation (EU) No 2018/1725, on the basis of Article 16 TFEU.
The EDPS' mission is to ensure that the fundamental rights and freedoms of individuals - in particular their privacy - are respected when the EU institutions and bodies process personal data.
The EDPS is responsible for:
Data protection authorities are empowered to conduct investigations, enquiries and inspections, either on their own initiative or on the basis of a complaint. Those are efficient tools to verify facts and collect more information where needed.
The EDPS, as a supervisory authority, is responsible for monitoring and ensuring the implementation of Regulation (EU) No 2018/1725. In this respect, the European Data Protection Supervisor has a lot of the same tasks and effective powers as the national supervisory authorities, including powers of investigation, corrective powers and sanctions, and authorisation and advisory powers, in particular in cases of complaints from natural persons, powers to bring infringements of this Regulation to the attention of the Court of Justice and powers to engage in legal proceedings in accordance with the primary law. The powers of the EDPS are listed in article 58 of Regulation (EU) No 2018/1725, while his tasks can be found in article 57.
Directive 2009/136/EC which came into force in May 2011, concerns the processing of personal data and the protection of privacy in the electronic communications sector (pdf). It is usually referred to as the "E-privacy Directive" and is an amendment of Directive 2002/58/EC.
The E-privacy Directive covers processing of personal data and the protection of privacy including provisions on:
The main changes to the 2002 Directive include a rule requiring the notification of data breaches (for instance someone whose personal data are lost, modified or accessed unlawfully while being treated by its electronic communications provider should be notified if this breach is likely to affect him/her negatively) and an extension of the Directive to also cover various electronic tags, strengthened enforcement rules, etc.