Ref. Ares(2016)6955771 - 14/12/2016
Directorate B - Institutional and Administrative Policies
SG.B.1-Corporate Management, Budget and Administration
Subject: Your application for access to documents - Ref. GestDem 2016/6818
Dear Mr Schindler,
We refer to your e-mail dated 01/12/2016 in which you make a request for access to documents,
registered on 05/12/2016 under the above mentioned reference number.
You have requested the following information/documents:
I am requesting all guidelines, notes, orders, communications, drafts, memos and all other
information regarding this procedure. This includes information how to determine the
criteria for "importance" of emails and the information who makes this determination and
who can challenge this determination. I would also like to have all information included in
this request when archiving was discussed with regards to obligations for record keeping and
the provision of emails for future use as well as information loss, such as unsuccessful or
successful data recovery. I would like to narrow the scope of this request to information
between now and 2005.
I am pleased to enclose copies of the documents we have concerning e-mail deletion after 6 months.
You will note that the degree of 'importance' of information contained in the e-mails is assessed by
the sender/recipient of the e-mail and guidelines (in document Ares(2015)182108) have been put in
place to help staff decide on the need to register or not an e-mail. This policy has launched at the
beginning of 2015 to encourage staff to register e-mails in the official record keeping system (Ares)
so as to ensure easy retrieval, by means of filing, and long-term retention.
Some of the documents to which you have requested access contains/contain personal data.
Pursuant to Article 4(1) (b) of Regulation (EC) No 1049/2001, access to a document has to be
refused if its disclosure would undermine the protection of privacy and the integrity of the
individual, in particular in accordance with Community legislation regarding the protection of
personal data. The applicable legislation in this field is Regulation (EC) No 45/2001 of the
European Parliament and of the Council of 18 December 2000 on the protection of individuals with
regard to the processing of personal data by the Community institutions and bodies and on the free
movement of such data1.
When access is requested to documents containing personal data, Regulation (EC) No 45/2001
becomes fully applicable2.
1 Official Journal L 8 of 12.1.2001, p. 1
2 Judgment of the Court of Justice of the EU of 29 June 2010 in case 28/08 P, Commission/The Bavarian Lager Co.
Ltd, ECR 2010 I-06055.
Commission européenne/Europese Commissie, 1049 Bruxelles/Brussel, BELGIQUE/BELGIË - Tel. +32 22991111
According to Article 8(b) of this Regulation, personal data shall only be transferred to recipients if
they establish the necessity of having the data transferred to them and if there is no reason to
assume that the legitimate rights of the persons concerned might be prejudiced.
We consider that, with the information available, the necessity of disclosing the aforementioned
personal data to you has not been established and/or that it cannot be assumed that such disclosure
would not prejudice the legitimate rights of the persons concerned. Therefore, we are disclosing the
documents requested expunged from this personal data.
In case you would disagree with the assessment that the expunged data are personal data which can
only be disclosed if such disclosure is legitimate under the rules of personal data protection, you are
entitled, in accordance with Article 7(2) of Regulation 1049/2001, to make a confirmatory
application requesting the Commission to review this position.
Such a confirmatory application should be addressed within 15 working days upon receipt of this
letter to the Secretary-General of the Commission at the following address:
Transparency unit SG-B-4
or by email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
You may reuse the documents requested free of charge for non-commercial and
commercial purposes provided that the source is acknowledged, that you do not distort the original
meaning or message of the documents. Please note that the Commission does not assume liability
stemming from the reuse.
Annexes: documents Ares(2015)182108, Ares(2015)408716, Ares(2015)496605,
Ares(2015)535007, Ares(2015)2338417, Ares(2015)2783632, Ares(2015)4462454,
Ares(2015)4866111, Ares(2016)2077072, Ares(2016)2075408, SEC(2009)1412, article from the
June 2015 issue of "Commission en direct" (the Commission staff's magazine)
Electronically signed on 14/12/2016 09:39 (UTC+01) in accordance with article 4.2 (Validity of electronic documents) of Commission Decision 2004/563