Data Protection Day: 40th anniversary of “Convention 108” on data protection

28 January 2021
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A number of online events will commemorate the 40th anniversary of the Council of Europe’s Convention for the Protection of Individuals with regard to Automatic Processing of Personal Data, also known as “Convention 108”. Opened for signature in Strasbourg on 28 January 1981, it was the first and remains the only binding international treaty on data protection and a model for many data protection regulations throughout the world.

An event organised by the German Federal Ministry of the Interior, Building and Community under the German Presidency of the Council of Europe Committee of Ministers will examine the challenges of the “Convention 108” and the EU General Data Protection Regulation. Secretary General Marija Pejčinović Burić will deliver a video message. (13h-16h30 CET).

As the Data Protection Day unfolds across the world, the Council of Europe will organise:

  • The Data Privacy Day 2021: Asia Pacific Region event, gathering privacy regulators and civil society representatives to discuss the advantages of the convention for Asia-Pacific countries and the evolution of “Convention 108” into the updated “Convention 108+”. (2:00 a.m.-3:30 a.m. CET)
  • The event Data Protection Day 2021 in Africa, bringing together African regulators and civil society representatives to examine the latest developments on data protection, and the advantages of Convention 108+ for African countries. (12:00 a.m.-13:30 p.m. CET)
  • A panel discussion at the Brussels annual international conference Computers, Privacy & Data Protection (CDPC2021) under the theme “40 years of data protection and many more to come: Convention 108 and 108+”. (6.30 p.m. CET)
  • The event Data Protection Day 2021 in Latin-America, gathering representatives of data protection authorities from the Region and from Europe, to discuss the latest developments on data protection and the advantages of Convention 108+ for Latin-American countries. (9:00 p.m.-10:30 p.m. CET)

In addition, the winners of the 2021 edition of the Stefano Rodotà Award, which rewards innovative and original academic research on data protection, will be announced.

More information - Contact: Jaime Rodriguez, tel. +33 6 89 99 50 42

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Council of Europe Media Relations Division:


+33 3 88 41 25 60