European Privacy Seal

One of the main problems facing the information society is a lack of transparency in IT products and services causing a lack of trust in IT solutions. Citizens and business often need “a good faith belief” when using privacy relevant IT products and services. Technical developments are made by the hour and the possibilities of electronic surveillance are huge. Currently there is no transparent guidance for choosing a data security and privacy compliant product in Europe. The aim of this project was to introduce and disseminate a transparent European product privacy certificate that fosters consumer protection, civil rights and acceptance of privacy by marketing mechanisms as well as an increase of market transparency for privacy relevant products that leads to an enlargement of the market for Privacy Enhancing Technologies and finally an increase of trust in IT.

This project undertook a market validation of a European Privacy Seal that certifies the compliance of IT products and services with European privacy and data security law (e.g. 95/46/EC and 2002/58/EC). It was based on the regional ICPP Privacy Seal which certifies IT products and services compliance with regional and national regulations of privacy and data security after the completion of a specific two-step procedure: an evaluation by accepted legal and IT experts and a crosschecking of the evaluation report by ICPP.

Manufacturers or vendors of IT products or IT-based services can apply for a privacy seal on a voluntary base and use the certification to demonstrate privacy compliance of their product to customers. Customers and users can employ the certificate, issued by an independent third party, as information for their product choice. A short public report published for each certified product provides additional information on the product.

The project focused on the trans-European validation of the certification procedure and certification criteria as well as on expert admittance and accreditation of certification bodies. The procedural scheme and the general certification criteria is made publicly available to guarantee transparency. The validation is supported by trials in Germany, Austria, Slovakia, United Kingdom, and Sweden. The project started with a market, potential and legal analysis followed by the adaptation of ICPP criteria on certification and expert admittance to the European demands and trial set up. During and after trials and validation, procedures and criteria were evaluated. At the end of the project, it has been expected to grant European Privacy Seals in a final event. One of the key outputs of the project was the establishment of a transparent European Privacy Seal procedure and of a European privacy criteria catalogue based on the relevant European Directives and Regulations.



  • Peissl, W. (2012). Datenschutz als Designmerkmal. In M. Decker, Grunwald, A., & Knapp, M. (Eds.), Der Systemblick auf Innovation – Technikfolgenabschätzung in der Technikgestaltung (pp. 141-148). Berlin: edition sigma.
  • Peissl, W. (2011). New and emerging approaches to privacy. Practis Newsletter, 11.
  • Sterbik-Lamina, J., & Peissl, W. (2009). Zertifizierter Datenschutz in Europa möglich - Ergebnisse aus dem Projekt EuroPriSe. Technikfolgenabschätzung - Theorie Und Praxis, 69-72. Retrieved from
  • Peissl, W. (2009). Privacy and Security - a way to manage the dilemma. (N. Pohlmann, Reimer, H., & Schneider, W., Eds.), ISSE 2009 Securing Electronic Business Processes. Highlights of the Information Security Solutions European 2009 Conference. Wiesbaden: Vieweg+Teubner.
  • Sterbik-Lamina, J. (2008). EuroPriSe: Erfolgreicher Schlusspunkt in Stockholm. Ita-Newsletter, 4 f.Retrieved from
  • Peissl, W. (2007). EuroPriSe - Auf dem Weg zu einem europäischen Datenschutz-Gütesiegel, 8. Retrieved from
  • Sterbik-Lamina, J. (2007). EuroPrise ExpertInnen-Workshop in Wien, 3-4. Retrieved from
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  • 25/11/2010 , Berlin
    Walter Peissl: 
    Datenschutz als Designmerkmal – Vorschläge zur Technikgestaltung am Beispiel von TA-Forschungen zur Privatsphäre in der Informationsgesellschaft
    Other Lecture
  • 22/10/2010 , Wien
    Walter Peissl: 
    Sicherheit und Datenschutz als integrierte Planungsvorgaben von Produkt- und Technologieentwicklung
    Jahreskonferenz des Instituts für Sicherheitsforschung [Sigmund Freud Priv. Univ. Wien]
    Other Invited Lecture
  • 27/10/2009 , Wien
    Walter Peissl: 
    Self-Regulation & Privacy: The Austrian Case
    Privacy OS
    Other Lecture
  • 07/06/2007 , Kiel
    Walter Peissl: 
    ITA - Organisation and Mission
    Public Kick-off Meeting EuroPrise
    Other Lecture
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06/2007 - 02/2009


Independent Center for Privacy Protection Schleswig Holstein, Germany


Agencia de Protección de Datos de la Communidad de Madrid, Spain Borking Consultancy, Netherlands Commission Nationale de l`Informatique et des Libertés, Frankreich Ernst & Young AB, Sweden Institut für Technikfolgenabschätzung, Österreichische Akademie der Wissenschaften, Austria London Metropolitan University, United Kingdom TÜViT, Germany VaF s.r.o, Slowakia