As application of the European Union’s (EU’s) General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)1 quickly approaches, the enforcement authority of the European data protection authorities (DPAs) is rightfully on everyone’s mind. The power to issue monetary fines against non-compliant entities of up to four percent of the entity’s past year worldwide turnover is one of the GDPR’s most striking provisions.2 But, the GDPR also includes a provision that may prove to be equally important: giving individuals the right to bring collective legal action against non-compliant entities. If these collective actions become common, understanding by whom, under what grounds, and where these suits may be brought will be critical in assessing the importance of compliance and the benefits and risks of launching European data initiatives.
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