Building Trust 21 February 2017

EU Issues Overview – 10 February – 17 February 2017

Internet Access

EU: Commission to release SMP Guidelines

  • The European Commission’s DG CNECT released a roadmap on the Review of the Commission guidelines on the assessment of significant market power (SMP) under the regulatory framework for electronic communications networks and services.
  • SMP Guidelines are one of the key instruments that guide NRAs in carrying out their duties, and directly affect undertakings providing electronic communications services.
  • The review will probably result in a Commission Communication released in the second quarter of 2018.

EU: Digital Commissioner on spectrum allocation

  • In an interview with the newspaper, Politico, Commission Vice-President Andrus Ansip elaborated on spectrum allocation for the next generation of communications technology, and described recent achievements as a big success.
  • He explained that the Commission had decided to take a “step-by-step” approach to achieve objectives, rather than bringing forward ambitious but unrealistic proposals.
  • A major focus of the Commission’s work in 2017 will be the deployment of 5G, as global competition is growing.

EU: CETA to boost European Tech Industry

  • On Wednesday, the European Parliament’s plenary endorsed the free trade agreement between the EU and Canada (CETA).
  • The deal is said to boost the EU’s tech industry, which will gain access to public procurement of the Canadian government and benefit from new commitments on telecoms, banking, and e-commerce.


Worldwide: Tech Industry Associations release recommendations for G20 summit

  • On Thursday, DigitalEurope, Bitkom, Confindustria and other global tech industry associations jointly released a paper recommending outcomes of the 2017 G20 summit in terms of ICT development.
  • They ask policymakers to promote the free flow of data, acknowledge privacy as a fundamental right, ensure that regulatory measures to enhance cybersecurity reflect the global nature of cyberspace, to use global, voluntary, industry-led standards, and to involve stakeholders in their decision-making procedures.

EU: ENISA study on security measures for DSPs

  • The EU Agency for Network and Security Information published a study on technical guidelines for the implementation of minimum security measures for Digital Service Providers (DSPs).
  • The study aims to assist Member States and DSPs in providing a common approach on the measures, by defining common baseline security objectives, describing different levels of security measures and mapping the security objectives against well-known industry standards, national frameworks and certification schemes.

EU: EDPS priorities for its policy and consultation role in 2017

  • The European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS) has identified three areas of strategic importance in 2017.
  • It priorities: the protection of privacy in electronic communications (particularly through the ePrivacy Directive); contributions to a Security Union and stronger borders; work on a new legal framework for the EDPS.
  • The EDPS will publish a toolkit to support policymakers in assessing the necessity of interference with the fundamental right to data protection.

EU: CETA missing wording on free flow of data

  • CETA, the free trade agreement between the EU and Canada, does not include any wording on data flows and personal data in trade negotiations.
  • EDRi, the European Digital Rights Organisation, argues that the deal hurts privacy rights .
  • Commission officials are still undecided whether to include such language in the trade agreement with Japan or in the multilateral Trade in Services Agreement.

EU: Projects to test cross-border data flows

  • The Commission’s recently published Communication on a European Data Economy included a number of experiments to test the need for legislation allowing data to flow more easily across the EU.
  • The Commission will select pilot projects on connected and automated driving, which are expected to be announced in March.
  • Some participant countries are, however, rumoured to be reluctant to carry out the tests across borders.

EU: Member States to improve cybersecurity

  • French President Hollande has publicly asked for actions to fight hacking ahead of national elections. He will convene a defense council on this issue on February 23. The announcement comes just a few days after Macron’s campaign manager accused Russia of committing cyberattacks on his party’s website. Russia promptly responded, denying the allegations.
  • In the Netherlands, the government announced it would include cyber in its foreign policy. In an “international cyberstrategy” sent to the Dutch Parliament on Sunday, the Foreign Affairs Minister outlined how diplomacy can help face cyber threats.
  • The UK government officially launched its National Cyber Security Centre on Tuesday, which has the objective of protecting authorities and companies against cyber-attacks. The centre is part of the U.K.’s security and intelligence agency and cost £1.9 billion.
  • Italy’s chief prosecutor is conducting an inquiry into Russian hacking of the Italian Foreign Ministry last year, when today’s Prime Minister Gentiloni was still Foreign Minister.

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