Implementing Convention 108+ – observer and NGO contributions

Graham Greenleaf encourages more NGOs to apply for accreditation, as they can achieve meaningful results in monitoring the level of compliance.

Convention 108+, the “modernised” and strengthened version of global data protection Convention 108, was finalised in 2018. Originally a convention with Parties drawn only from the Council of Europe, for most of the last decade Convention 108 has been “globalising” its membership, resulting in accessions from eight countries(1) outside the Council of Europe, to give a total of 55 parties. These Parties are currently finalising the ratifications of Convention 108+.

The Convention’s Consultative Committee (to be called the Convention Committee under 108+) has admitted as Observers a variety of organisations, including: non-Party States,(2) both those which have an interest in becoming Parties and those with a longstanding relationship with the Council of Europe; international organisations(3) with an interest in the Convention; some DPAs(4) from potential Parties; and just five non-government organisations (NGOs) with strong interests in data privacy.(5) The new Convention 108 allows its Convention Committee to do likewise (art. 22(3)).

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