Victoria Hudgins: EU’s Digital Markets Act Could Spark E-Discovery Headaches—And Possible Innovation

Extract from Victoria Hudgins’s article “EU’s Digital Markets Act Could Spark E-Discovery Headaches—And Possible Innovation”

The Digital Markets Act is set to provide European Union citizens with additional privacy rights. But like the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), it also further increases the risk and potentially heightens the complexity of preserving, collecting and reviewing EU-based custodians’ data.

On March 24, the EU and the European Parliament approved the European Commission’s Digital Markets Act that extends new obligations and limitations on Big Tech “gatekeepers.” The Commission defined gatekeepers, in part, as providers of an online service, such as a search engine, social networking site, online video-sharing, cloud computing or operating system, that has more than 45 million monthly active end users.

Gatekeepers’ new obligations under the Digital Markets Act include requiring consent before combining data across platform services. Non-gatekeeper companies can also request that gatekeepers allow interoperability between messaging services. Initial penalties for violating the act could reach as high as 10% of the gatekeeper’s total turnover in the preceding financial year.

To be sure, it’s not certain how many businesses will request additional interoperability with gatekeepers after the law goes into effect, perhaps in October. However, such software changes could complicate e-discovery or create opportunities to enhance e-discovery services, industry observers said.

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