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Old 27-05-2008, 11:57  
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Around the place
Services: Virgin 20mb cable
Posts: 77
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Re: Virgin Media Phorm Webwise Adverts [Updated: See Post No. 1, 77, 102 & 797]

I just got an email from '' that is apparantly my reply from Viviane Reding.

It contains a .tif file which appears to be a scanned letter - virus scanning now (paranoid, yes :P), I'll post it once I've had a chance to peruse/censor :P


Ok. So, due to it being multiple pages long I don't appear to be able to get them all into photoshop, so I'll have to type it all out.
It's not from Comissioner Reding, but it is apparantly from someone instructed to reply on her behalf

Originally Posted by Viviane Reding
The Comission is aware of the activities of the company Phorm in the UK, concerning the analysis of internet traffic for advertising purposes, the agreement between Phorm and major internet service providers in the UK and the concerns that have been raised about the effects on privacy of these activities. Privacy and the protection of personal data are fundamental rights of the citizens of the EU. They are enshrined in articles 7 and 8 of the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights, and also protected by the European Convention on Human Rights and the related instruments of the Council fo Europe, to which all EU Member States are signatories.

The general principles of personal data are defined in Directive 95/46/EC and complemented and particularised for electronic communications by Directive 2002/58/EC on privacy and electronic communications (ePrivacy Directive). The ePrivacy Directive obliges Member States to ensure the confidentiality of communications and related traffic data through national legislation. In particular, they shall prhobit listening, tapping, storage or other kinds of interception or surveillance of communication and the related traffic data by persons other than the users without their consent, which must be freely given, specific and informed indication of the user's wishes[1]. The data concerned in this particular matter i.e. the content of search queries, constitute communication within the meaning of this Directive and the URLs used in the packets constitute traffic data. This data should therefore be protected appropriately.

The responsibility for the enforcement of national legislation transposing EU Directives is with the competent national authorities[2]. The ICO, the UK data protection authority, has issued several statements concerning Phorm. According to press information, the ICO is also investigating in at least one case, where a formal complaint has been made concerning alleged trials of Phorm technology by BT in 2007[3].
The Comission services will continue to follow this case and possible similar developments and take appropriate action, should the need arise. The Comission confirms its commitment to the protection of privacy and security of electronic communications as one of its top priorities

1) So, as we already knew, Phorm is illegal, and very much so.
2) Apparantly our national authorities are competent - this is news to me :P
3) This, also, is news to me.
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