Europol is the European Union’s law enforcement agency. Headquartered in The Hague, the Netherlands, Europol actively cooperates with law enforcement authorities of the EU Member States to combat serious international crime and terrorism. Europol also works with many non-EU partner States and international organizations in particular in the fight against terrorism, cybercrime and people smuggling.
On 11 May 2016 a new regulation for Europol was adopted (EU 2016/794). The regulation which came into force in May 2017 extended Europol's role and responsibilities to allow for a coordinating role in investigations.
In line with Europol Regulation (EU) 2016/794, the European Data Protection Supervisor is designated as the supervisor of personal data processing since 1 May 2017.
The EDPS cooperates closely with national supervisory authorities through a Europol Cooperation Board (ECB), an advisory body for which the EDPS also provides the Secretariat. This Board meets regularly to facilitate cooperation between the EDPS and national supervisory authorities on issues requiring national involvement.
The EDPS acts as an independent supervisory authority with full-fledged enforcement powers, whose decisions can be challenged before the European Court of Justice.
The EDPS is also accountable, for his or her supervision activity, before the Joint Parliamentary Scrutiny Group (JPSG), composed of representatives of the European and of national Parliament, established under the Europol Regulation.
As set out in Article 14 of the Europol Act 2012, the Data Protection Commission is the national supervisory authority.
Rights of data subjects in relation to Europol
The Europol Regulation provides any individual with the right to obtain information (Art. 36) on whether or not personal data relating to him or her are processed by Europol, to ask for rectification, erasure and restriction (Art. 37) of such data and, more in general, that his or her data are processed in accordance with data protection principles (Art. 28), notably in a fairly and lawful way.
An individual wishing to exercise his/her right of access to data relating to him/her which are stored within Europol, or to have such data checked, may make a request free of charge to the Europol National Unit (see address below), who shall then transmit the request to Europol and notify the individual concerned that Europol shall reply directly. Europol must deal with the request within three months of its receipt.
Europol National Unit
Liaison & Protection
You may request that the Data Protection Commission check whether any data about you by Europol are being processed lawfully.
If you experience difficulty exercising your data protection rights in relation to Europol, you can Raise a Concern with the Data Protection Commission.