1. Article 29 Data Protection Working Party
The "Working Party on the Protection of Individuals with regard to the processing of Personal Data", known as Article 29 Data Protection Working Party, was formed according to Article 29 of Directive 95/46 on the protection of individuals with regard to the processing of personal data and on the free movement of such data. The Working Party has a consultative role for the Commission but it is independent. It is composed of a representative of the supervisory authority or authorities designated by each Member State and examines important issues or issues that fall under the first pillar of the EU. The issues are examined upon demand of the Commission or upon proposal of the members of the Working Party. The Working Party issues Opinions and working documents.
2. Spring Conference of Data Protection Commissioners
Each April takes place the Spring Conference of the Data Protection Commissioners, in which participate the Authorities of the European Union and the other states of Europe. The Spring Conference are closed conferences having theme sessions dedicated to important issues, where are presented the main presentations and then the delegations present the developments in their country or go into more specialized issues.
3. International Conference on Privacy and Personal Data Protection
Each autumn takes place the International Conference of Data Protection and Privacy Commissioners. In the Conference may participate the Authorities, the Commissioners and the other competent services responsible for the data protection from all over the world. The organization of each conference is assumed by the Authorities of the country chosen between the candidate countries, during the works of the Conference of the previous year. The International Conference including two parts: (a) an open Conference, that takes the form of international conference in which participate the official national bodies and in which participate apart from the national data protection authorities other interested parties of the public and private sector and the scientific community and (b) the closed conference in which participate only the Commissioners or the Data Protection Authorities during which participate the Commissioners or the Data Protection Authorities and during which are discussed current data protection issues and are adopted declarations on these matters. The International Conference of the year 2007 was carried out in Montreal Canada in the 25-28.9.2007. For further information: http:/www.privacyconference2007.gc.ca
4. Schengen Joint Supervisory Authority
The Hellenic Data Protection Authority participates with two full members and two alternate members in the Schengen Joint Supervisory Body that meets in the Seat of the European Council in Brussels. The JSA Schengen was formed on the basis of the Article 115 of the Schengen Implementation Agreement and is responsible for the control of the technical support service of the Schengen Information System and issues concerning the implementation or interpretation of this system's operation.
5. Customs Joint Supervisory Authority
The Customs Joint Supervisory Authority, according to the provisions of the Convention on the Use of Information Technology for Customs Purposes and the Strasbourg Convention of 1981, taking into consideration the Recommendation R(87)15 of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe, on 17 September 1987, controls whether the personal rights are violated during the storage, processing and use of data entered in the Customs Information System. The Hellenic Data Protection Authority participates with two full and two alternate members.
6. Schengen Evaluation
By the Sch/Com -ex(98) /16-9-1998 decision of the Schengen Executive Committee, the Schengen Evaluation Committee was established, aiming at the evaluation of the member states and the candidate member states in order to examine whether the conditions of the Schengen Implementation Agreement are observed, to record probable problems and to suggest solutions. In this framework, the Schengen Evaluation Working Party whose competence is to carry out visits and audits in the under evaluation states, was established. The audits are assigned to Audit Groups, specialized by sectors and formed by experts of the authorities of the member states who are assisted by a representative of the Council. Once the Audit has been carried out, a final report is drawn that is communicated to the Working Party. On the basis of the results of the Audits Groups, the Working Party draws the final Evaluation Report for the member state that is submitted to the Evaluation Committee and the Council. In the framework of above mentioned procedure, the Schengen Evaluation Working Party has formed Audit Groups in the following sectors 1) Control over the land borders 2)control over the sea borders 3) control over the air borders 4) police cooperation 5) visas and consular cooperation 6) SIS-SIRENE 7) Data protection. In these groups participate experts from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Public Order and the Data Protection of each member state. The Hellenic Data Protection Authorities participates in the Audit Group concerning the data protection.
7. Europol Joint Supervisory Body
Europol is an organisation set up in order to assist the EU member states in their efforts to prevent and combat serious forms of international crime in cases where the specific criminal act is linked to the structure of the organised crime and affects at least two member states. In practice, the main Europol task is to facilitate the exchange of information between the member states and to provide expertise services. Given that Europol handles a large amount of sensitive personal data, the Europol Convention includes provisions that demand to take into consideration the personal rights when using such information. The Convention also provides for the establishment of the Joint Supervisory Body - an independent authority charged with guaranteeing that Europol complies with the basic principles of data protection. The Hellenic Data Protection Authority is represented in the Joint Supervisory Authority for Europol, and in the Customs Joint Supervisory Authority that meet in the Seat of the European Council in Brussels, with two full and two alternate members. It is also represented in the Appeals Committee of the Joint Supervisory Body of Europol with a full and an alternate member.
8. Working party on Police and Justice (WPPJ)
The Working Party on Police and Justice (WPPJ) is a working party of the European Data Protection Authorities. The French Commission Nationale de l' Informatique et des Libert?s who had the initiative for its establishment in the beginning of the 1990s considered that it the creation of a wide working group was necessary (that was then called Police Working Party) for the protection of personal data in the sector of justice and police cooperation on criminal cases (3rd pillar of the European Union). During the last Spring Conference of Data Protection Authorities that took place in Cyprus in May 2007, the finding that the initiatives assumed in the framework of the 3rd pillar of the European Union require special attention of the Data Protection, leaded to the change of the organization of WPPJ (selection, tenure of office of the President and the Vice President, organization of the Secretariat, actions that are allowed to be assumed) that is charged to deal with data protection issues in the framework of the third EU pillar and especially biometrics, the availability principle and the control over police files. The draft of the decision-framework for the data protection in the sector of justice -police cooperation in criminal cases, as it was presented by the German Presidency (in March 2007) provides, of course, the set up of a Joint Supervisory Authority (similar to the Europol and Schengen) that supervises and guarantees the application of rules for data processing in the 3rd pillar issues. The perspective for the creation of an institutional body having the above mentioned areas of competence could be a positive development for the protection of personal data. Until this takes places, WPPJ, even if it does not have the form of an institutional body, has assumed the data protection issues in the framework of the third pillar.
9. Contact network of spam enforcement authorities (CNSA)
The CNSA group of the European Commission was formed as a contact network of the competent European Authorities for spam mail. The Hellenic Data Protection Authority participates in the Group as the body responsible for spam issues in Greece, according to L. 3471/2006. The CNSA meets regularly, exchanges best practises and cooperates at cross-border level for legislation implementation issues. CNSA has established a cooperation procedure for cross-border complaint handling concerning spam. CNSA supports and participates as an observer in the London Action Plan (LAP). LAP consists of law enforcement authorities which concern spam coming from 20 countries and has also established a cross-border cooperation procedure.
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10. The International Berlin Cooperation Work Group for Data Protection in the Telecommunications
The work group was established in 1983 in the International Conference of Data Protection and Privacy Commissioners, as an initiative of the Berlin Data Protection Commissioner, who is since then the head of the network. The network has adopted an important number of common positions-working papers aiming at the protection of the privacy in telecommunications. The members of the Group are representatives of all the Data Protection Authorities, as well as other national and international organisations and scientists all over the world. Some of the current issues are search engines (e.g. Google), the storage of data in the Whois base, RFID, electronic tickets in the public transport, digital television, etc.
11. Case Handling Workshop.
This group constitutes an internal forum of cooperation between all the EU Data Protection Authorities, aiming at the exchange of experiences concerning the complaint and question handling in the data protection as well as the communication of data protection issues. The meetings take place twice a year and are organised by the member states. The Hellenic Data Protection Authority hosted the Case Handling Workshop in November 2006.
12. National Commission for Human Rights
The National Commission for Human Rights has an advisory role in the protection and strengthening of the human rights. The aim of the National Commission for Human Rights is to point out to the Greek authorities the need to effectively protect the rights of the individuals residing in Greece. The Hellenic Data Protection Authority is represented by a full and an alternate member.
13. National E-business Council
The establishment of the National E-business Council is provided for by Article 8 of the Law 3377/05. According to the law, the Council has an advisory role to the Minister of Development and recommends for:
The framework of its areas of competence includes
The National E-business is formed by 30 members, one of which is a representative of the Data Protection Authority. There is a two year term of office that may be renewed once or more times, for equal time.
14. The Information Society Monitoring Committee
The Special Management Service of the OP "Information Society" is one of the management services of 25 Programs (in Sectors and Regions) of the 3rd CSF (2000-2006) and it is co-financed by the European Social Fund and the European Regional Development Fund. The role of managing Authority for the Information Society is to guarantee the effectiveness and the legitimacy of the management and implementation of the respective program. The Monitoring Committee applies its decisions as they are transmitted by the Managing Committee. In the Committee participates a representative of the Hellenic Data Protection Authority.