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NRC Handelsblad, 6 December 2014: 'Summary proceedings against state over storage of internet and call data'

"The massive storage of location data, internet, email and call behaviour of all Dutch citizens must be stopped immediately. That is what the Dutch Association of Criminal Defence Lawyers, journalists' union NVJ and the Privacy First foundation demand in summary proceedings they filed against the Dutch state. According to law firm Boekx in Amsterdam, internet provider BIT is also joining and other internet and telecom providers are also considering it. Last spring, the European Court of Justice ruled that storing the data constitutes a serious invasion of privacy, while it remains unclear to what extent it is strictly necessary to tackle terrorism and crime.

Based on this ruling, the Council of State established that it must be clearly and precisely defined which data, from which electronic means of communication and from which persons are needed for the prevention, detection or prosecution of serious crime. Recently, Minister Opstelten (Justice, VVD) announced his intention to amend the law, but to continue mass storage.

In doing so, according to lawyer Fulco Blokhuis, the Netherlands is acting in violation of the European Court ruling. "Opstelten only wants to restrict access to the data, among other things by having a judge decide whether the data may be used in an investigation. That is completely insufficient. Storing everyone's communication data is a gross violation of the fundamental right to privacy and must stop immediately."

Since 2009, telecom companies have been required to keep a year-long record of who called whom when and from what location. Internet providers must be able to tell for six months who emailed with whom when or logged on and off the Internet. (...) Blokhuis expects the court in The Hague to rule in January or February."

Source: NRC Handelsblad 6 December 2014, p. 6. Also published in NRC Next (p. 2) and at