Dutch gov't ordered to stop collecting, processing plane passengers' data
The Ministry of Justice and Security must immediately stop the large-scale collection and processing of airline passenger travel details, the Dutch Data Protection Authority (AP) said on Tuesday. The data is meant to gain insight into terrorists and criminals’ movements, but the Ministry collects, processes, and stores all airline passengers’ data. “This is not permitted and must stop,” the AP said.
This involves Passenger Name Records (PNR) data. According to the AP, the Ministry systematically collects, automatically processes, and stores the data of many thousands of people who don’t belong to the group the database is intended for - terrorists and serious criminals. “The necessity and proportionality of that processing cannot be justified,” the privacy watchdog said.
The Ministry has to limit the current processing of PNR data considerably and only process data that are necessary and proportionate for the fight against terrorism and serious crime, according to the AP. The AP advised the Ministry to do so last year. But according to the watchdog, the Ministry has not taken action to process this data lawfully.
The privacy watchdog gave the Ministry 14 days to indicate how it will bring the processing of PNR data into the legal frameworks. “The AP is authorized to halt data processing with a ban, if necessary.”