European Data Protection Board holds March plenary session

March 16, 2022

The EDPB has held its March plenary session.

The Board adopted Guidelines on dark patterns in social media platform interfaces. The guidelines offer practical recommendations to designers and users of social media platforms on how to assess and avoid so-called “dark patterns” in social media interfaces that infringe on GDPR requirements. Dark patterns are interfaces and user experiences implemented on social media platforms that cause users to make unintended, unwilling and potentially harmful decisions regarding the processing of their personal data. This influences users’ behaviour and ability to effectively protect their personal data. The guidelines give concrete examples of dark pattern types, present best practices for different use cases and contain specific recommendations for designers of user interfaces that facilitate the effective implementation of the GDPR.

During the session, it adopted Guidelines on Article 60 GDPR. The drafting of such guidance is part of the EDPB Strategy and Work Programme 2021-2022 to support effective enforcement and efficient cooperation between national supervisory authorities. The guidelines provide a detailed description of the GDPR cooperation between supervisory authorities and aim to further increase the consistent application of the legal provisions relating to the one-stop-shop mechanism. The guidelines help supervisory authorities to interpret and apply their own national procedures in such a way that it conforms to and fits in the cooperation under the one-stop-shop mechanism.

Of interest for the UK, the EDPB also adopted a toolbox on essential data protection safeguards for enforcement cooperation between EEA and third country supervisory authorities. This also contributes to one of the key actions of the EDPB Strategy and Work Programme 2021-2022 and aims to facilitate the engagement between EDPB members and the supervisory authorities of third countries. The toolbox can be used both for administrative arrangements developed within the EDPB by the supervisory authorities themselves and for international agreements negotiated by the European Commission. The toolbox covers key topics, such as enforceable rights of data subjects, compliance with data protection principles and judicial redress.

Finally, the EDPB adopted a joint EDPB-EDPS opinion on the proposals to extend the Digital COVID Certificate.