Following on from previous discussions, EU ambassadors today endorsed an agreement reached between the Council presidency and the European Parliament last week on changes to the 2014 regulation governing the statute and funding of European political parties and foundations.

The new rules will allow for financial sanctions to be imposed on European political parties and foundations that deliberately influence, or attempt to influence, the outcome of EP elections by taking advantage of breaches of data protection rules.The new statutes aim to significantly stiffen the penalties for attempting to influence European Parliament elections

The EU institutions are working rapidly to have the rules in place before the EP elections this spring.

George Ciamba, Romanian Minister Delegate for European Affairs stated “Misuse of personal data to influence elections cannot be allowed. This is essential for electoral processes and the future of our democracies. Member states are determined to ensure that this year’s European elections will be fair and protected from the malicious use of data breaches.”

The EU Parliament will vote on the proposals in the April plenary session.