Shortly after Viviane Reding expressed hope for the European Union’s data reform measures taking shape in 2014, Peter Fleisher offered a harsh rebuke of what has been presented so far. Reding is vice president of the European Commission and EU justice commissioner; Fleisher is Google’s global privacy counsel.
Speaking at a New Year’s reception held by Dutch telecoms firm KPN, Reding described her 2014 agenda, which started with data reform. She said the “mass spying,” which came to light this year, “have been a wake-up call.” According to Reding, to handle the fallout, Europe must act.
“As you know, the European Parliament has shown the way, backing proposals for strong, uniform EU data protection rules which the European Commission put on the table already two years ago,” Reding said. ”The heads of state and government committed to a ‘timely’ adoption of the new rules in October. Not much progress has been made since. But I hope that under the Greek presidency that has just started, member states will now finally take the big decisions needed.”