Sunday

23rd Jul 2017

Most countries have failed to combat spam

Nine EU member states have failed to adopt on time a privacy law helping the fight against unwanted e-mail, or so-called spam.

The European Commission has now given them two months to provide an explanation.

Thank you for reading EUobserver!

Subscribe now and get 40% off for an annual subscription. Sale ends soon.

  1. €90 per year. Use discount code EUOBS40%
  2. or €15 per month
  3. Cancel anytime

EUobserver is an independent, not-for-profit news organization that publishes daily news reports, analysis, and investigations from Brussels and the EU member states. We are an indispensable news source for anyone who wants to know what is going on in the EU.

We are mainly funded by advertising and subscription revenues. As advertising revenues are falling fast, we depend on subscription revenues to support our journalism.

For group, corporate or student subscriptions, please contact us. See also our full Terms of Use.

If you already have an account click here to login.

Belgium, Germany, Greece, France, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal, Finland and Sweden have not been able to implement the directive banning e-mail spam.

If they fail to respond to the Commission within the required two months, they could face possible court action.

The main idea of the law is to reduce internet fraud and protect people getting unwanted e-mail. Almost half of the e-mails people receive in Europe are spam, according to Commission research conducted earlier this year.

"It is urgent that Member States adopt a consistent legislative approach to such issues as unsolicited emails, the use of location data or cookies", said Erkki Liikanen, Commissioner for Enterprise and the Information Society.

"This will strengthen consumer confidence in e-commerce and electronic services, which is a prerequisite for sustainable growth in the sector", Mr Liikanen added.

Anyone can buy cheap software, which allows individuals to send unwanted e-mails to millions of people within a few days.

However, most of the spam comes from outside the EU, therefore international co-operation is a key element in fighting against unwanted e-mail.

Austria, Britain, Denmark, Ireland, Italy and Spain have already taken the necessary steps.

The law went into effect on 31 October.

European anti-spam rules in force

As of Friday (31 October) the European Union member states have committed themselves to implementing a new directive banning e-mail spam - but only four countries have actually put the rules in place.

Polish parliament steps up showdown with EU

Lawmakers in Poland adopted a controversial reform of the Supreme Court, despite warnings from the EU that the move could trigger a sanction procedure over the rule of law.

Investigation

Mafia money pollutes the EU economy

Huge amounts of money from criminal activities are funnelled into the legitimate European economy. But little is being done about it at EU or national level.

Investigation

Mafia money pollutes the EU economy

Huge amounts of money from criminal activities are funnelled into the legitimate European economy. But little is being done about it at EU or national level.

News in Brief

  1. Polish parliament adopts controversial justice reform
  2. GMO opt-out plan unlikely to go anywhere in 2017
  3. Slovak PM threatens to boycott inferior food
  4. France takes Google's 'right to be forgotten' to EU court
  5. Turkey accuses German companies of supporting terror
  6. Israel's Netanyahu caught calling EU 'crazy'
  7. UK does not collect enough data to expel EU nationals
  8. Polish president threatens to veto justice reform

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. European Jewish CongressJean-Marie Le Pen Faces Trial for Oven Comments About Jewish Singer
  2. ACCAAnnounces Belt & Road Research at Shanghai Conference
  3. ECPAFood waste in the field can double without crop protection. #WithOrWithout #pesticides
  4. EU2017EEEstonia Allocates €1 Million to Alleviate Migratory Pressure From Libya in Italy
  5. Dialogue PlatformFethullah Gulen's Message on the Anniversary of the Coup Attempt in Turkey
  6. Martens CentreWeeding out Fake News: An Approach to Social Media Regulation
  7. European Jewish CongressEJC Concerned by Normalisation of Antisemitic Tropes in Hungary
  8. Counter BalanceOut for Summer Episode 1: How the EIB Sweeps a Development Fiasco Under the Rug
  9. CESICESI to Participate in Sectoral Social Dialogue Committee on Postal Services
  10. ILGA-EuropeMalta Keeps on Rocking: Marriage Equality on Its Way
  11. European Friends of ArmeniaEuFoA Director and MEPs Comment on the Recent Conflict Escalation in Nagorno-Karabakh
  12. EU2017EEEstonian Presidency Kicks off Youth Programme With Coding Summer School

Latest News

  1. Dutch coalition talks lengthiest in 40 years
  2. Polish parliament steps up showdown with EU
  3. EU urges UK to clarify its Brexit positions
  4. Law expert: direct EU powers have become too complicated
  5. Winter is here for Spitzenkandidat, but he'll survive
  6. Mafia money pollutes the EU economy
  7. Central Europe should be wary of Brexit stopping
  8. Poland's 'July coup' and what it means for the judiciary