German Constitutional Court Finds Retention of Identification Data Unconstitutional

The Constitutional Court of Germany (the “Court”) ruled on 2 March 2010 that communications network service providers should immediately delete the identification data they have retained. According to the Court, the retention of the identification data is not unconstitutional as such but the law regarding the matter is too vague and should be revised by the legislator before data can be retained by communications network providers.

In Germany as well as in other EU member states, the storage of identification data is based on the Directive 2006/24/EC on retaining data generated through electronic communications or public communications networks. The objective of the Directive is to facilitate the investigation of crimes and terrorism. In its ruling, the Constitutional Court of Germany found German law to exceed the requirements set by the Directive, therefore creating an unreasonable threat to the privacy of individuals.

Roschier, Attorneys Ltd. - Sweden