On December 15, 2015, the European Union reached an agreement on the final text of the new General Data Protection Regulation. The Regulation will replace the 1995 Data Protection Directive, which is currently the basis for national data protection laws of the Member States of the European Union (EU).
It is widely expected that the European Parliament and Council will approve the compromise in the coming weeks. The Regulation will then have full legal effect two years after its publication in the Official Journal of the European Union. Thus, it is likely the Regulation will come into effect in the first quarter of 2018. This would bring to an end a process that started in January 2012 with the publication of the original proposal by the European Commission. [...]