Security.co.uk, 14 Feb 2013: 'Legal action on capturing all license plates'
"If Security and Justice Minister Opstelten's proposal to keep license plates of all cars for a period of one month goes through, legal action will follow. This is what the Privacy First Foundation is threatening. Recently, Opstelten announced that he wants to extend the authority of police to keep license plates for longer periods. This could potentially help fight crime.
Under current rules, this data should be deleted within 24 hours. In 2010, the previous justice minister (Hirsch Ballin) planned to submit a similar proposal with a 10-day retention period. However, the House of Representatives subsequently declared the issue controversial.
"Opstelten, with his current proposal, is still adding a few shovels to the mix," Privacy First argues. The foundation sees Opstelten's bill as a threat to society.
Every citizen becomes a potential suspect by this measure. You have to trust the government, but that government itself distrusts citizens," said Privacy First chairman Bas Filippini. "In a healthy democratic constitutional state, the government should leave innocent citizens alone. With this bill, the government crosses that principled line."
In early 2010, the Dutch Data Protection Authority (CBP) ruled that police forces were not complying with the rules by storing license plates longer than allowed by law.
According to the CBP, all license plates that are not suspicious (so-called "no-hits") should be immediately removed from the databases. "Opstelten is therefore now going against this by also storing the license plates of non-suspicious citizens for four weeks," Privacy First reports.
If parliament passes the bill, Privacy First will sue the Dutch state and have the law declared non-binding because it violates the right to privacy. If necessary, the foundation will continue litigation all the way to the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg."
Source: Security.co.uk, 14 February 2013.