In the decision dated February 11, 2020, the data protection authority had to deal with the question of how long a mobile communications provider may continue to provide services after the termination of a
Contract may retain master data. Master data is data that is required for the establishment, processing, modification or termination of a contract.
of the legal relationship between the user and the provider or for the creation and publication of subscriber directories (e.g. name, address, information on the nature and content of the contractual relationship). The mobile provider partially refused the requested deletion and argued that master data would only be deleted after seven years from the termination of the contract. The basis for this are the provisions of § 132 BAO and § 212 UGB. In this regard, the data protection authority stated that Section 97 para. 1 TKG 2003 stipulates a strict purpose limitation for the processing of personal data. According to § 97 para. 2 TKG 2003, master data must be deleted by the operator at the latest after termination of the contractual relationship with the subscriber. Exceptions are only permitted to the extent that this data is still required to charge or collect fees, process complaints or fulfill other legal obligations. § Section 132 of the BAO and Section 212 of the Austrian Commercial Code (UGB) stipulate a retention period of seven years and therefore also provide a legal basis for the further processing of data after termination of the contract. However, the seven-year period does not begin to run from the termination of the contract but, in accordance with the express statutory wording of these provisions, generally already from the end of the fiscal year to which the documents relate.
The decision is legally binding.