DPAs decide on closer cooperation on strategic cases

The EDPB members, at the meeting that took place on 27–28 of April 2022, have agreed to further enhance cooperation on strategic cases and to diversify the range of cooperation methods used.

– In the past four years, we have invested a great deal of resources in the interpretation and consistent application of the GDPR by endorsing and adopting no less than 57 Guidelines and 6 Recommendations. Enforcement by the data protection authorities (DPAs) has ramped up with cumulative fines adding up to 1.55Bn€ at the end of 2021 – said Andrea Jelinek, the Chair of the European Data Protection Board, during the meeting.

The Chair of EDPB emphasised that more than ever, strong and swift enforcement of regulations is crucial for ensuring a consistent interpretation of the GDPR. Which is why, to stay on top of this growing workload and make the most efficient use of the possibilities for cooperation foreseen in the GDPR, each year a number of cross-border cases of strategic importance will be identified for which an action plan with a fixed timeline for cooperation will be set.

– All EDPB Members are committed to close cooperation and we focus on practical solutions to strengthen the capacity of DPAs to enforce – summarised Andrea Jelinek.

During the meeting is was agreed upon that the groups of DPAs may decide on joining forces on investigation and enforcement activities and that DPAs may share the work within these groups. When needed, an EDPB taskforce can be created.

Furthermore, DPAs committed themselves to further exchange of information on national law enforcement strategies with a view to agreeing on annual enforcement at the level of EDPB, which may be reflected in national inspection plans. DPAs can prepare a common enforcement framework, including common instruments for inspections.

What is more, the EDPB stresses the importance of further harmonisation of national procedural laws.

“We will identify a list of administrative procedural aspects that could be further harmonised on EU level to maximise the positive impact of GDPR cooperation, and share this information with the European Commission. This will help bridge differences and ensure a more effective application of the GDPR.” – summarised Andrea Jelinek.

The text of the joint statement is available on EDPB website.