On 9 November, the European Parliament adopted the “Data Act”. This regulation provides for harmonised rules for fair access to and use of data and is aimed in particular at the IoT (“Internet of things”). Virtual voice assistants and chatbots such as Alexa, Siri and ChatGPT are among those affected. The Act is intended to promote innovation and competitiveness by removing barriers to data access.
The Data Act essentially provides users of machines and devices with a right of access to the data generated by their use and collected by the data owner, be it personal or purely technical data. Users can be both private individuals and companies, whereby the GDPR must be observed without restriction when disclosing personal data. Correspondingly, far-reaching obligations are imposed on the so-called “data holders”, in particular the free provision of the corresponding data in real time.
The Council still has to formally approve the regulation. Parliament and the Council have already reached an informal agreement. As an EU regulation, the Data Act will then be directly applicable in all EU member states. The main provisions of the Data Act should apply from autumn 2025.