EU Sues Sweden for Failing to Implement Online Data Retention Policy

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The European Commission has sued the country of Sweden for failing to implement the European Union (EU) Data Retention Directive – a mandate of having in place data retention legislation aimed at codifying how and for how long an ISP must retain user data.

Under the Data Retention Directive, all members of the EU must have in place data retention legislation requiring ISPs to retain user data for a period of time not less than six months, and not exceeding two years. This is to allow law enforcement agencies a window of opportunity to subpeona such information during the course of an investigation.

The issue that the EU has with Sweden is that it has not yet even introduced such legislation.

According to a report in the Swedish newspaper Svenska Dagbladet, the reason that Sweden does not yet have such legislation is that the agency tasked with introducing the legislation, the Swedish Justice Ministry “has been busy” and, also, “it’s not Justice Minister Beatrice Ask’s favorite project.”

Up until now, Swedish ISPs were able to legally have a policy of simply deleting all user data within a very short period of time, however implementation of an EU Data Retention Directive compliant law will mean that Swedish ISPs can no longer flush user data so readily.

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