German presidency releases new EU ePrivacy compromise text

According to Euractiv, the German EU Council presidency has released a new compromise text on the highly controversial ePrivacy regulation. The leaked text indicates the Germany is seeking to permit the processing of metadata in online communications for ‘monitoring epidemics’ or to help in ‘natural or man-made disasters. The text states for instance that “processing of electronic communications metadata for the protection of vital interests of the end-user may include for instance processing necessary for humanitarian purposes, including for monitoring epidemics and their spread or in humanitarian emergencies, in particular, natural and man-made disasters.” Euractiv reports that although the German Presidency clarified the cases where metadata can be processed under certain ‘vital’ circumstances, they have also withdrawn the right for communications providers to process metadata for ‘legitimate interest’ reasons.