More than 10 Squire Patton Boggs European Data Privacy, Cybersecurity and Digital lawyers attended last week’s Brussels Data Protection Congress.

At the congress, Counsel Diletta De Cicco participated in a panel with journalists Luca Bertuzzi from Euractiv and Vincent Manancourt from POLITICO. They explored the topic: Is the Press the (Best) GDPR Enforcer? The discussion focused on the perceived lack of effective enforcement of the GDPR and the different roles the press plays in filling the enforcement void – such as setting enforcement priorities, triggering investigations, raising awareness, or even acting as a deterrent.

The panelists underlined that the regulators still play a primary role in enforcement but acknowledged their own influence on concrete enforcement actions. They also shared valuable insights into their day-to-day work and their rapport with regulators, lawyers, and other industry stakeholders. Both panelists noted the importance of building a network and being a “people person,” as well as the challenges of considering divergent points of view when covering a story. As a wish list for the future, the panelists called for more focus on other sectors besides the big tech and emphasized the importance of having more journalists specializing in tech topics.