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About the Speech:

The ePrivacy Regulation (ePR) is due to become enforceable across the European Union later this year, replacing the ePrivacy Directive of 2002.  It seeks to extend the scope of existing privacy and confidentiality standards to ‘over-the-top’ communications services such as Skype, as well as simplify the consent process by creating a one-off, mandatory requirement of opt-in consent to tracking cookies. Together with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which the ePR has been designed to complement, the ePR will harmonise data protection law across the EU.

However, although the legislation was successfully passed by the European Parliament in late October 2017, it has proved divisive, with commentators and policymaker split in their view on its likely implications for media, commerce and the completion of the Digital Single Market initiative.

Ms. Lauristin discussed both the advantages of and challenges around the ePR, for businesses, consumers, citizens and others, and the progress that is likely to be made in its implementation over the course of 2018.

About the Speaker:

Marju Lauristin is from Estonia and is a member of the Party of European Socialists.  She was rapporteur for the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE) at the European Parliament (EP) from 2014 to 2017. In 2017 she successfully ran for election to the City Council of Tartu and stepped down from her positon in the European Parliament. She has been a Professor of Social Communication at Tartu University since 2003 and was Minister of Social Affairs of Estonia from 1992 to 1994.