eco european newsletter
Issue 11: June 2022
In May, the European Commission proposed new legislation to “prevent and combat child sexual abuse”, with which it plans to have extensive search and monitoring obligations, Internet blocking and chat controls implemented. From the perspective of the Association of the Internet Industry, the planned new regulation fails...
In an advance interview, Marcus Busch talks about why Germany and Europe are on the right path towards digital sovereignty and strong cybersecurity and where the German federal government still needs to make adjustments.
The Digital Ministers of the G7 countries are now meeting in Dusseldorf, with the protection of digital infrastructure and cybersecurity being key focal points due to the Russian war of aggression on Ukraine. In a guidelines paper, eco defines how these topics can be strengthened in a sustainable manner.
Dr. Béla Waldhauser, spokesperson for the Alliance for the Strengthening of Digital Infrastructures in Germany, founded under the umbrella of eco – Association of the Internet Industry, is a new member of the Board of the Climate Neutral Data Centre Pact, a European self-regulatory initiative under whose umbrella leading data centre operators and associations joined forces last year.
The German Federal Constitutional Court (BVerfG) has ruled that the Bavarian Law on the Protection of the Constitution is in large parts not compatible with the German constitution. This applies, among other issues, to the provisions contained therein on online state searches, the tracking of mobile phone terminals, data transmission and blanket data retention.
At the age of 15, ten times fewer girls than boys consider taking up a technical profession. In order to counteract this imbalance, to provide impetus to the debate, and to offer recommendations for companies, policymakers, educators and parents, eco - Association of the Internet Industry has published a white paper entitled: "Girls in Tech: A Call to Action" for Girls' Day on 28 April.
In recent times, the topDNS initiative has been a key factor which has enabled eco to apply a special weight to meeting the goal of protecting the “telephone book of the Internet”. The EU Commission has also just published a Study on Domain Name System (DNS) Abuse, which eco regards as having very good insights - but also some flaws.
The Internet Industry Monitor conducted by eco and Arthur D. Little sheds light on the likely effects of the Russian war of aggression on the Internet industry in Germany. Apart from continued inflation and self-imposed restrictions in the industry as a result of the Russian war of aggression on Ukraine, the impact on the German Internet industry is quite limited compared to other industries.
Commenting on today’s ECJ judgment which announces that Article 17 of the Copyright Directive is compatible with Union law and which overrules Poland’s complaint, eco Chair of the Board Oliver Süme states that the judgment sends out a bad signal for online freedom of expression.
The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) has been in force in Europe for four years. However, there is still uncertainty about its interpretation and implementation. eco – Association of the Internet Industry calls for a uniform application of the GDPR that not only creates legal clarity and the necessary scope for development and innovation but also makes it easier for Internet users to handle.
The European Commission has proposed new legislation to “prevent and combat child sexual abuse”, with which it plans to have extensive search and monitoring obligations, Internet blocking and chat controls implemented. From the perspective of eco, the planned regulation fails to take into account the legitimate fight against illegal Internet content.
Issue 10: April 2022
Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and US President Joseph Biden recently announced a new agreement on legally secure data exchange between the US and the EU. We welcome the fact that, after the recent failed attempts to establish a successor agreement to the EU-US Privacy Shield, things are now starting to once...
Svenja Hahn is a Member of the European Parliament for the FDP and part of the Renew Europe Group. In an interview with eco, she talks about the challenges of regulating artificial intelligence, the goals of the AI Act and her Digital Single Market working group. What challenges does the EU face in integrating artificial...
Regarding the statements by Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and US President Joseph Biden on a new deal for legally secure data exchange between the US and the EU, eco Chair of the Board Oliver Süme welcomes the fact that things are now starting to once again move forward.
eco Association and its affiliated organisations are deeply dismayed by what is currently unfolding in Ukraine. We condemn in the strongest possible terms the war of aggression triggered by Russian President Putin, which is clearly contrary to international law, and the suffering it is inflicting. The industry and politics must now work together without any delay to find ways to combat disinformation and possible cybersecurity incidents.
Today, Tuesday, the Complaints Office of eco –Association of the Internet Industry is presenting its annual report for the year 2021, where a new high of notified legal violations on the Internet has been recorded.
Two years down the line, and the world’s most important IoT congress – the Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona – could open its doors once again and the eco Association was there, live in person. As part of the NRW pavilion, eco and several member companies were able to present themselves on location.
Making the DNS ecosystem more secure requires the commitment of a variety of market participants. In March 2022, the eco topDNS initiative took part in Cloudfest in Rust with a view to heightening the direct awareness of this requirement within the industry.
Since 1 October 2021, the Fair Consumer Contracts Act has been entering into force step-by-step in Germany. eco Association, in cooperation with the law firms Fieldfisher and Rickert.Law, has now published a paper summarising the industry’s obligations.
Our world is facing significant challenges. As players in the Internet industry, we are part of the solution. eco’s Managing Director Alexander Rabe how member companies can get involved in the campaign “We are part of the solution – the Internet Industry”, which focuses on the positive sides of digitalisation.
The trend to increasingly use digital technologies to work from home or on the road is expected to continue even after the Covid-19 pandemic. The majority of employees in Germany plan to continue to make greater use of digital technologies to work regardless of location.
Issue 9: November 2021
The Digital Services Act is a major opportunity to create a strong up-to-date legislative framework that will strengthen the EU internal market and create much needed legal certainty. For this, we also need a workable balanced and future proof legislation that retains important cornerstones of the E-Commerce Directive....
You were responsible for the EU Parliament’s Legal Affairs Committee’s own-initiative report on the Digital Services Act. How do you think illegal and hate content online can best be combated, and where do you draw red lines? First of all, I would like to stress how important this new legal act is. The current legal...
An important milestone for the end of blanket data retention in Germany: On 18 November, Manuel Campos Sánchez-Bordona, Advocate General of the European Court of Justice (ECJ), will present his opinion in the legal dispute between SpaceNet AG and the Federal Republic of Germany.
eco welcomes the plans finalised by the OECD last week to introduce a global minimum tax for the world's largest corporations, which the G20 finance ministers are expected to confirm this week at their meeting in Washington.
There’s no question about it: For any member of the Internet industry on either side of the Atlantic, data transfer is currently a hot (and admittedly complex) issue. To delve deeper into this topic, a transatlantic dialogue was recently co-hosted by the European-based eco Association and the U.S.-based i2Coalition.
eco Chair of the Board Oliver Süme is a member of the newly founded Mobility Data Space Expert Council, which will be presented this week at the ITS World Congress in Hamburg. “The mobility of the future is digital and connected,” says Oliver Süme.
eco's DNS-over-HTTPS whitepaper shows need for action by all providers of Internet infrastructures. The association provides information at the it-sa security trade fair in Nuremberg on potential threats and protection options for the Domain Name System (DNS).
Issue 8: October 2021
This week, the committees’ agendas in the European Parliament included discussions and votes on the DSA and the DMA. The German Federal Minister of Justice, Christine Lambrecht (S&D), and the Danish Minister of Trade, Simon Kollerup (S&D), have published a joint open letter on the DSA. In the letter, they...
The European Commission has defined ambitious goals for a digital Europe and, in recent months, has presented initial strategies for achieving these goals, including the Digital Markets Act, the Digital Services Act and the European Green Deal. It is now time to have these strategies and goals converted into concrete political measures.
Digital technologies and services enable high CO2 savings in cities and metropolitan areas. In this way, they make a significant contribution to climate protection and are indispensable on the way to a carbon-neutral city, the Smart City study by eco and Arthur D. Little shows.
With the support of eco – Association of the Internet Industry, SpaceNet AG wants to put an end to blanket data retention. With this in mind, the company had already filed a lawsuit against the act at the Administrative Court in Cologne in 2016. In September 2019, the German Federal Administrative Court submitted several...
Regardless of which coalition will govern Germany in the next four years, it must make a holistic, well thought-out and consistent digital policy strategy the guiding principle of its policies. eco Chair Oliver Süme is convinced that digital policy must be the common thread of the coalition agreement because digitalization is the key to tackling the biggest challenges of the coming years.
The current eco Election Barometer sees FDP in the lead on digitalisation, The Greens and CDU/CSU on a par, ahead of SPD, and the Left Party lagging behind. The barometer shows that digital infrastructure, digital public administration and cybersecurity are viewed as the top issues for the next legislative term. eco calls for a Ministry of Digitalisation and focus on broadband roll-out and digital public administration.
Issue 7: July 2021
Gaia-X will contribute to more innovation in Europe. The goal of Gaia-X is the conception of a federated data infrastructure with a focus on data sovereignty and data availability, based on European standards and values. Gaia-X is also an important project for our association: In cooperation with partners, we’ve taken...
Secure digital identities are a key factor for further digitalisation in Europe, a stronger convergence of the Digital Single Market, and more efficient public administration. In this regard, Prof. Norbert Pohlmann, eco Board Member for IT Security, comments on the update of the eIDAS Regulation by the EU Commission.
Summa one of 24 new Gaia-X AISBL Board Members DE-CIX as a blueprint for other Internet Exchange operators Harald A. Summa, CEO of DE-CIX, the operator of the world’s leading Internet Exchange in Frankfurt am Main, was one of 24 people elected to the Gaia-X AISBL Board during the organisation’s first general assembly...
The gambling market in Germany is in a state of upheaval. Online gambling offers in particular are becoming increasingly popular. Current surveys come to the conclusion that three quarters of the German population have already participated in commercial gambling offers (online and offline).
The #LiT – Ladies in Tech initiative aims to gain more visibility in media, politics and society for female role models from the tech industry, and to highlight current pressing issues and topics related to women in the IT and digital industries
The project partners, coordinated by the eco Association, have completed the specification of the first four Gaia-X Federation Services. These form the technical basis for the development of a European data infrastructure for the secure digitalisation and networking of different participants.
EuroISPA has launched its Annual Policy Report 2020, which provides an overview of the principal activities of 2020 and insights into the policy focus areas of the Association. Whilst the past year presented many challenges and obstacles across the globe and across industries, EuroISPA was able to maintain its momentum...
We are in the middle of the transformation process of industry and SMEs. If we succeed in this, Germany’s future will also look bright. An interview with Sven Ursunis, Director of Government Affairs at Huawei Germany.
We're now just a few months before the German Bundestag elections, and dissatisfaction with the German Coalition’s digital policy is still on the rise. Only about three percent of German citizens are satisfied with the work of the federal government in the areas of digital education and digital administration, a fact that is shown by the eco Association Digital Policy Election Barometer.
There is a high level of dissatisfaction amongst German citizens when it comes to the federal government’s digital policy: 73 percent of those surveyed in the current “Digital Policy Election Barometer” state that they are not satisfied with the political framework conditions and solutions in any field of digitalisation.
Issue 6: May 2021
Digital technologies offer a huge potential when it comes to finding solutions for todays problems in energy consumption and environmental polution. Reaching the European climate goals will only succeed with digitalisation. Therefore, the topic of digital sustainability also plays a major role in this issue: Last month...
On 5 May, the EU Commission presented an update on the European Industrial Strategy published last year, which aims, among other things, to accelerate the transition to greater levels of digitalisation and sustainability in companies. Furthermore, with the strategy update, the Commission addresses important fields of action...
The European Commission today presented its proposal on the regulation of AI technologies. eco – Association of the Internet Industry welcomes the fact that Brussels is refraining from a blanket overregulation of artificial intelligence and is instead focusing on AI regulation for high-risk applications.
The groundwork for digitalization’s legal path and an increasingly data-driven economy is being laid primarily in Brussels. This is particularly evident this year, with the European Commission having taken up a series of projects which will decisively Europe’s digital and data legal framework over the next decade.
For 25 years, the Complaints Office of eco – Association of the Internet Industry has been successfully combatting illegal content on the Internet. The 2020 report presented online today shows that the independent hotline is making a significant contribution to the take-down and criminal investigation of illegal content: With a total of 5,523 cases, the number of justified complaints displaying a clear violation of the law was higher in 2020 than ever before.
DoH improves the privacy and security of users eco Discussion Paper on DoH explains complexities and provides recommendations Paper – first published in September 2020 – now available in Spanish Throughout the history of the Internet, traditional DNS traffic – for example, when a user types a website name...
Sustainability experts from all over the world will present ideas and solutions for a more climate-friendly digitalisation with reduced energy consumption on the Hasso Plattner Institute (HPI) virtual “clean-IT Forum”.
In many different spheres, Digital Germany has made great strides, especially during the Corona pandemic. But where do we currently stand and what still needs to be addressed in terms of sustainable digitalisation, digital sovereignty & education or IT security? In the run-up to the 2021 German federal election, we present various Internet industry and digital policy perspectives. In the current interview: Inger Paus, Managing Director of the Vodafone Institute for Society and Communication in Germany.
In Germany, the past years have shown that there needs to be a central digital ministry that pulls all threads together and keeps an oversight on the broad lines of the digital agenda. Oliver Süme, Chair of the eco Board, sees this as a topic that should be on the agenda of the cabinet and the Bundestag now, not only after the Bundestag election!
When it comes to digital policy, German voters give the federal government a poor rating, and are calling for digital issues to be accorded greater political priority in the coming legislative term. eco formulates an Internet Policy Agenda for the Bundestag elections with 20 core demands from the Internet industry for a modern digital policy.
The eco Association is highly critical of the fact that the German coalition is apparently ignoring all warnings about the consequences of source telecommunication surveillance and the use of so-called “State Trojans”, and calls for a hearing with digital experts in the Bundestag.
With today’s approval of the Telecommunications Modernisation Act, the German Federal Council (Bundesrat) has once again adopted data retention - and the German legislator is once again breaking EU law.
Issue 5: February 2021
The Brexit negotiations were tough and, since the UK left the European Single Market and the Customs Union at the turn of the year, delays in trade and supply chains are also increasing. To ensure that the same doesn't happen with the exchange of data between the EU and the UK, the European Commission recently published...
The current draft of the BND Act by the German Federal Chancellery is set to give the German Federal Intelligence Service permission to access inventory, traffic and content data without the knowledge of the operator in question. The eco Association warns of the consequences of such a regulation for general IT security and judges the draft as being unconstitutional.
eco – Association of the Internet Industry has taken on the specification of the GAIA-X Federation Services and has set up a Project Management Office (PMO) and defined five work packages. The German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) is funding the project with around 13.5 million Euro.
One year after the adoption of the EU Green Deal, leading cloud infrastructure providers and data centre operators in Europe have signed up to a joint Climate Neutral Data Centre Pact – with this including the Alliance for the Strengthening of Digital Infrastructures in Germany, founded under the umbrella of the eco Association.
The new German Telecommunications & Telemedia Data Protection Act (TTDSG) has now been adopted by the Federal Cabinet. In the international field, a proposal for the ePrivacy Regulation made under the Portuguese EU Council Presidency was presented to the EU’s deputy ambassadors on the same day. The eco Association calls for an approach which guarantees coherence and harmonisation between the TTDSG and the planned ePrivacy Regulation
“The new regulations on ancillary copyright for press publishers included in the latest draft law, in combination with the planned upload filters, will lead to a deep incision into freedom of expression and stunt the development of new and innovative platforms throughout the whole of Europe,” says eco Chair of the Board Oliver Süme.
With an online event on 8 March 2021, Salesforce and eco #LiT – Ladies in Tech celebrated International Women’s Day and the 1st anniversary of Salesforce’s “Bring Women Back to Work” programme. In advance of the event, we spoke with Petra Jenner of Salesforce about career opportunities for women in the tech industry and what tech companies can do to attract and retain more women.
Issue 4: November 2020
Are European data centres ready for the climate targets of the EU Green Deal, to strengthen climate and environmental protection through digitalisation? A new study with best practices in the field of energy-efficient data centres formulates technological development potentials as well as policy recommendations.
Last week, the German EU Presidency presented a proposal on the ePrivacy Regulation, with a decision possibly to be made tomorrow by the Telecommunications Working Group. For eco, the proposal is a significant step backwards for digitalisation.
America has voted. On the topic of the 59th US presidential election, eco Chair of the Board Oliver Süme says: “For many decades, the relationship between the USA and Germany has been characterised by intensive economic and social interaction. This transatlantic relationship must be reactivated and strengthened over the next four years."
eco – Association of the Internet Industry welcomes the fact that the EU Commission Work Programme for 2021 includes numerous digital focal points and legislative projects to bring Europe through the current Corona crisis both economically and socially, and to make it more resilient.
At a virtual conference of European digital ministers being held today, an agreement is to be reached on the merging of European cloud capacities. For the Association of the Internet Industry, GAIA-X is considered to be a flagship project in this realm, offering the potential to fully exploit the opportunities of the data economy while at the same time making a reality out of the Digital Single Market.
From 1 January 2021 onwards, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (“the UK”) will no longer be party to the European Union legislation, rules and agreements (aka “Brexit”). We asked Eva Kasprowicz, an IT and Privacy lawyer at Fieldfisher (Germany) LLP, about the potential impacts from an EU privacy perspective and how affected businesses should prepare for it.
Report from a first transatlantic dialogue on intermediary liability, jointly hosted by the eco Association and the U.S.-based i2Coalition, which brought together renowned Internet industry experts from both sides of the Atlantic.
Issue 3: October 2020
In her keynote speech on the State of the European Union (State of the European Union), EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen set out what the eco Association sees as important goals for the Digital Decade, and addressed some of the most urgent challenges in the context of digitalisation. Von der Leyen highlighted...
After a long break, representatives of the institutions met on Thursday to resume the trialogue negotiations on the regulation on online terrorist content. Two internal documents were published shortly before. From the so-called 4-column document and a last status report of the Council, it follows that the Council and the...
The German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) today passed the now 10th amendment of the German Act against Restraints of Competition (GWB). eco takes a critical stance on the planned changes in competition law.
This week, the German Bundestag intends to pass a motion on the “Future Technology Artificial Intelligence”, which will include a statement on the European Commission’s AI White Paper. In February of this year, the EU Commission announced stronger regulations in its AI White Paper.
The Internet industry will be one of the most dynamic industries in Germany in the coming years, as a new joint study by the eco Association and the management consultancy Arthur D. Little shows. Despite the Covid-19 pandemic, during which individual large segments of the Internet industry suffered slumps, an increase in revenue of almost 75 percent to approximately 253 billion Euro is expected by 2025.
For more than 20 years, the eco Complaints Office has been effectively combatting illegal online content. Alexandra Koch-Skiba, Head of the eco Complaints Office, is convinced that the successful cooperation between companies, complaints offices and law enforcement agencies will become increasingly relevant in the future....
Issue 2: August 2020
Significant increase in energy efficiency: 12 times lower energy consumption per GB of data transmitted in data centres compared to 2010 Constantly decreasing CO2 emissions (30% less by 2030) despite increasing demands on computing power Global energy efficiency potential through cloud computing not yet exhausted Berlin,...
The German Federal Network Agency (BNetzA) today published the latest draft of its security catalogue. eco welcomes the fact that the BNetzA has not succumbed to political pressure and has focused on appropriate criteria for the security of telecommunications networks.
The Internet Society Organization Member Advisory Council serves as an advisory body to the Internet Society senior management and board, on matters affecting the general welfare and effectiveness of the global Internet and its users.
In June, the German Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection (BMJV) published a discussion draft on a Second Act on the Adaptation of Copyright Law to the Requirements of the Digital Single Market. With the related Act, the controversial Art. 17 of the EU Copyright Reform (DSM Directive) is also to be transposed into German law.
In its ruling, the European Court of Justice has overturned the EU-US Privacy Shield. The transfer of personal data to the USA will now present European companies with extreme challenges. In interview, eco Managing Director Alexander Rabe talks about how the ruling affects international business models, the Internet industry,...
This year the Association of the Internet Industry is celebrating it's 25th anniversary. In the past 25 years, eco has shaped numerous internet policy debates in Germany, Europe and even at international level: A Review of the 25 Biggest Internet Policy Debates. For some years now, Maximilian Schrems from Austria –...
In light of the Corona crisis, the German federal government should focus more on digital policy issues. 65.4 percent of Germans share this view, according to a representative survey commissioned by eco – Association of the Internet Industry from the opinion research institute Civey - a survey in which 2,500 people in Germany took part at the beginning of August.
Issue 1: June 2020
The GDPR has been in force since 25 May 2018. From the perspective of the eco Association, despite initial concerns, the GDPR has after two years now established itself as a fundamentally appropriate regulatory instrument – but there is still room for improvement in its implementation for SMEs.
Despite Corona, the infrastructure layer will grow from 28.7 billion Euros (2019) to 30.3 billion Euros in 2020, thus growing faster than the other segments of the Internet industry The Corona crisis leads to an annual growth rate of 1.7 percent higher than originally expected for the Internet infrastructure from 2022 Corona...
The EU Commission presented new measures to combat disinformation in connection with the coronavirus on 10 June 2020. With the new guidelines, operators of social networks are now to report monthly on how they deal with false information about the COVID-19 pandemic.
Is there a right to be forgotten? A controversial Internet debate took a new turn in 2014 with a landmark ruling by the European Court of Justice (EUCJ). In short, the Luxembourg court ruled that, in certain cases, search engines can be obliged to remove links to personal data. The upshot: not only operators of websites...
It’s no secret that, in the Internet industry, there are currently far less women employed as specialists than men. Across the globe, women represent just one quarter of tech specialists, while in Europe, just one sixth of such roles are occupied by women. In order to support companies in their efforts to access the world’s greatest untapped pool of talent, today the eco Association has published a study and guide “Women in Tech Across the Globe: A Good Practice Guide for Companies”.