Recital 24*

Go to related Article 4

Commission proposal

(24) When using online services, individuals may be associated with online identifiers provided by their devices, applications, tools and protocols, such as Internet Protocol addresses or cookie identifiers. This may leave traces which, combined with unique identifiers and other information received by the servers, may be used to create profiles of the individuals and identify them. It follows that identification numbers, location data, online identifiers or other specific factors as such need not necessarily be considered as personal data in all circumstances.

EDRi’s Proposed amendment

(24) When using online services, individuals may be associated with one or more online identifiers provided by their devices, applications, tools and protocols, such as Internet Protocol addresses, or cookie identifiers, or other unique identifiers. This may leave traces which, combined with unique identifiers and other information received by the servers, may be used to create profiles of the individuals and identify them. It follows that identification numbers, location data, online identifiers or other specific factors as such need not necessarily be considered as personal data in all circumstances. Since these identifiers leave traces and can be used to single out natural persons, this Regulation should be applicable to processing involving such data, unless these identifiers demonstrably do not relate to natural persons, such as for example the IP addresses of web servers and thus cannot be considered as ‘personal data’ as defined in Article 4(2).

Justification

The Commission proposal significantly reduces the applicability of data protection principles to such online identifiers. It should be noted that the leaked draft for the interservice consultation stated that such online identifiers should always be considered personal data. The proposed amendment makes it clear that such identifiers should be considered personal data, unless they demonstrably are not.

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