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EU Commissioner Says Sweeping Data Protection Changes Still Needed

Roberta Holland | August 20, 2014

The flap over the right to be forgotten should not derail the wider discussion of data protection reform in the European Union, according to the bloc’s new justice commissioner.

EU Justice Commissioner Martine Reicherts said in a speech earlier this week that the debate has become distorted over the European Court of Justice’s ruling on individuals’ right to ask search engines to remove certain links from search results in specific circumstances. Speaking to the IFLA World Library and Information Congress in Lyon, France, Reicherts said while Google and other search engines “complain loudly,” the ruling should not be used to undermine the ongoing data protection overhaul. Claims the ruling will lead to censorship are unfounded, and the decision should be no harder to implement than tracking down the owner of copyrighted material, she said.

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