EDPS and FRA strengthen ties to improve data protection cooperation

Giovanni Buttarelli

Today I signed a memorandum of understanding for increased cooperation between the EDPS and the Fundamental Rights Agency of the European Union.

This is no empty gesture. It reflects not only the close and constructive relationship our two organisations have enjoyed since their inception over ten years ago; but it also marks our common intention to exploit more fully the synergies In our research and consultative role towards our fellow EU bodies and institutions, as well as towards our partners and interlocutors around the world.

I have just had the pleasure of a fresh exchange of views with the Director of the FRA, Michael O'Flaherty. From the use of encryption to safeguard private messages to the use of biometric identifiers in large scale migration databases to devising a new digital ethics, we are convinced that the rapport between data protection and privacy and the other rights and freedoms under EU law is one of interdependence.

Our roles are quite distinct but the MoU is a statement of our determination to work in tandem to safeguard more effectively the rights and interests of the individual across the range of the EU's activities.