Objections by supervisory authorities

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Dear Colleague,

Under the right of access to documents in the EU treaties, I request documents that contain the following information: Any objection by a data protection supervisory authority against a decision or other action of another supervisory authority.

This request for documents includes, but is not limited to, minutes; notes, whether hand written or typed; audio recordings; verbatim reports; e-mails; correspondence, telephone calls, video calls, publications; reports; presentations; telephone calls; and policy papers.

I would very much appreciate your assistance in this matter.

Faithfully,

Johnny Ryan

European Data Protection Board

Thank you for your message. We will look into your request and respond
within due time.
 
Kind regards,
 
The EDPB Secretariat

European Data Protection Board

Dear Mr. Ryan,

Thank you for your email. However, the broad description given in your request does not enable us to adequately identify the scope of your request and, as a result, the concrete documents you are seeking access to.

We therefore invite you, in accordance with Article 6(2) of Regulation (EC) No 1049/2001 regarding public access to documents, to provide us with more precise information on the documents you request, such as references, topic, dates or periods during which the documents would have been drawn, persons or bodies who drafted the documents etc. In this regard, it would be particularly useful if you could specify the context you are referring to. If you need further assistance to define more clearly the documents you are seeking access to, please do not hesitate to let us know.

Thank you for your cooperation.

Kind regards,
The EDPB Secretariat

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Dear European Data Protection Board,

Thank you for your message.

The time period of the records I request is from 25 May 2018 to the present day, 8 January 2021.

1. I am interested in records related to the EDPB's decision 01/2020 on the dispute arisen on the draft decision of the Irish Supervisory Authority regarding Twitter International Company under Article 65(1)(a) GDPR, of 9 November 2020. In particular, I seek records of EDPB members, secretariat, concerning objections to the Irish DPC.

2. I am interested in records related to any other objections by supervisory authorities against the Irish DPA's conduct of investigation, handling of complaints, or any other aspect of its work, in the period specified.

Yours faithfully,

Johnny Ryan

European Data Protection Board

Dear Mr Ryan,

Thank you very much for your message.

Before registering your request, we would like to be sure that we have correctly understood your request.

We understand that by "records" you do not only mean documents to be formally archived, but rather any type of document referring to whether the objections raised in the case met the definition of "relevant and reasoned objection", as well as copies of the objections themselves.

As regards the second point mentioned in your request, we understand that you are referring to objections to any draft decision of the Irish supervisory authority.

Could you please confirm whether this understanding is correct?

We would also like to clarify that we can only give access to documents which are held by the EDPB and its secretariat.

Thank you in advance for your response.

Kind regards,
The EDPB Secretariat

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Dear European Data Protection Board,

By "records" I mean any type of documents, communications, or notes. This includes, but is not limited to, minutes; notes, whether hand written or typed; audio recordings; verbatim reports; e-mails; correspondence, telephone calls, video calls, publications; reports; presentations; telephone calls; and policy papers.

My request is not limited to documents, communications, or notes that met the definition of "relevant and reasoned objection". Nor is my request limited to objections to draft decisions. I am requesting objections, whether formal or otherwise, from a supervisory authority against a decision or other action, of another supervisory authority.

Faithfully,

Johnny Ryan

European Data Protection Board

Thank you for your message and for your interest in data protection. We
will look into your request and get back to you within due time.
 
Kind regards,
 
The EDPB Secretariat

European Data Protection Board

Dear Mr Ryan,

 

Thank you for your reply.

 

We consider that this description is too broad as it does not enable us to
adequately identify the scope of your request and, as a result, the
concrete documents you are seeking access to.

 

In accordance with Article 6(1) of Regulation 1049/2001, applications for
access to a document shall be made in a sufficiently precise manner to
enable the institution to identify the document. As explained in our email
dated 22/12/2020, the scope can be clarified with more precise information
on the documents you request, such as references, topic, dates or periods
during which the documents would have been drawn, persons or bodies who
drafted the documents etc. In this regard, it would be particularly useful
if you could specify the context you are referring to.

 

In your most recent message, you have stated that your request refers to
"objections whether formal or otherwise, from a supervisory authority
against a decision or other action, of another supervisory authority."

 

This broad description does not enable us to adequately identify the scope
of your request. "Objections whether formal or otherwise against any
decision or other action," seems to refer to any kind of differing opinion
expressed by one supervisory authority against the opinion of another on
any possible topics. If this is indeed what you intended, in order to
identify the documents in scope of this request, we would need to check
the minutes of all EDPB meetings (172 meetings held during 2020 alone), as
well as email exchanges from 25 May 2018 to the present day for references
to "object" and similar words, as well as synonyms thereof. The EDPB
would incur a disproportionate workload in order to carry out the
preliminary research required to identify the documents potentially
related to your request. In this regard, we would like to draw your
attention to the EU case law enabling the institution to not proceed the
preliminary research when the request is not precise (F-121/07 ,
[1]F-121/07 , Strack v Commission) or on the possibility to refuse to
identify the documents falling under the scope of a request if the
identification would lead to a disproportionate workload (T-653/16,
[2]T-653/16, Malta v Commission).

 

In order to be able to proceed with analysing your request, we would
therefore ask you to provide us with more information which would allow us
to identify the documents in scope of your request. While you are not
required to provide any reasoning for your request, it may be helpful if
you could provide us with any information on your interest in obtaining
the documents, insofar as this would help us to determine the documents in
scope of your request.

 

For the sake of clarity, please note that the EDPB holds documents
regarding formal objections made by supervisory authorities, in the sense
of Article 4(24) GDPR, only in those cases where the dispute resolution
mechanism has been triggered (Article 60 (4) GDPR), implying the
involvement of the EDPB. In other words, if the lead supervisory authority
decides to follow an objection to its draft decision, the EDPB does not
hold any documents on this, as these exchanges take place only among
national supervisory authorities, in the context of the cooperation
procedure. Up to now, 168 one stop shop decisions where taken following a
consensus found directly between the national supervisory authorities.  

 

Until now, the EDPB dispute resolution has been triggered once, in the
case you refer to in your message dated 8 January 2021. Some of the
documents produced in the context of the procedure are: objections
received from the concerned supervisory authorities, comments regarding
these objections, analysis of the secretariat, and preliminary draft
versions of the draft decision. We would therefore ask you to confirm
whether you are indeed requesting access to documents generated in the
context of the EDPB decision 1/2020 and if so, whether your request is
related to a specific type of document. We would need this information in
order to understand the scope of your request and determine whether the
assessment of all the documents potentially in scope is feasible within
the deadline foreseen in Regulation 1049/2001.

 

If you need further assistance to define more clearly the documents you
are seeking access to, please do not hesitate to let us know.

 

Thank you for your cooperation.

 

Kind regards,

The EDPB Secretariat

 

 

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Dear Colleagues,

I understand.

In that case, I limit my request to records related to the dispute resolution mechanism, including those your mentioned: objections received from the concerned supervisory authorities, comments regarding these objections, analysis of the secretariat, and preliminary draft versions of the draft decision.

Johnny