European Privacy Association

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The European Privacy Association is a Brussels based organisation that described itself as a think tank on the European Transparency Register until a complaint from Corporate Europe Observatory after which it changed its entry to 'In-house lobbyists and trade/professional associations and more precisely: Trade, business & professional associations'.[1]

A report in the Financial Times referred to is as an 'astroturf' organisation.[2] Though his letter to the Financial Times was headlined ‘“Astroturfing” does not describe EPA’ its ‘Scientific Director’ Paolo Balboni did not deny the label saying merely that it was ‘offensive’. [3]

The EPA declares three staff in the European Transparency register. Their entry notes that 'Three individuals serve EPA. None of the three are employees or receive any compensation for the work that they do for the Association.'[4] This suggests that their salary costs are covered by other employers. the person with 'legal responsibility;' for the EPA is Karin Riis-Jørgensen, a former Danish Member of European Parliament who is now working as a senior advisor for Brussels-based PR consultancy Kreab Gavin Anderson. Among her clients is Swedish Match.



Web: European Privacy Association]


  1. Corporate Europe Observatory ‘Complaint forces European Privacy Association to confirm Facebook, Google, Microsoft and Yahoo are corporate backers’, 18 June 2013. Accessed 12 July 2014.
  2. Fontanella-Khan, James ‘Brussels: Astroturfing takes root: The EU has been swamped by aggressive lobbyists funded by large US tech companies’. Financial Times. June 27, 2013: 11. Accessed 12 July 2014.
  3. Paolo Balboni ‘”Astroturfing” does not describe EPA’ Letters to the Editor, Financial Times. 2 July 2013: 8.
  4. European Transparency Register European Privacy Association. Accessed 12 July 2014.