EU court ruling could end data capture in UK

 
Kate McCann
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A CONTROVERSIAL EU diktat that required telecoms firms to capture and store customer data for up to two years has been ruled invalid.

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) yesterday warned that the 2006 ruling represents a threat to privacy and raised serious concerns about the way data is stored and protected.

The ruling, which came about as a result of two complaints, one from the high court in Ireland and one from an Austrian court, said: “By requiring the retention of those data and by allowing the competent national authorities to access those data, the directive interferes in a particularly serious manner with the fundamental rights to respect for private life and to the protection of personal data.”

The court also discovered that data does not have to be kept within the EU, leading to concerns that it could be used by America. A spokesman for the Prime Minister said the government is considering the implications of the judgement carefully.

A Home Office official added: “The retention of communications data is absolutely fundamental to ensure law enforcement have the powers they need.”