Under new legislation that came into effect on January 1, German employers must now submit their employees’ income data to a government-sponsored central mainframe. The database is believed to form part of Germany’s largest ever data acquisition program.
Employers must now send information monthly to the so-called ELENA database regarding workers’ contributions to Germany’s social programs.
Beginning in 2012, Germany’s social welfare authorities will be able to use this data to assess whether to pay out or refuse benefits to applicants.
Trade unions and civil rights groups have criticised the project, while the Pirate Party – which is concerned about the amount of information being collected – referred to it as an “excessive heightening and storage of personal data.”
Read more on Deutsche Welle.