“The app is much better than the mess of paper”

Hesse’s data protection officer, Alexander Roßnagel, comments on the follow-up of contacts in the pandemic, the affair surrounding the threatening letters from “NSU 2.0” and his skepticism towards social networks.

The Luca app is used to track contacts.

Alexander Roßnagel was unanimously elected Hessian Commissioner for Data Protection and Freedom of Information on December 10, 2020 at the suggestion of the state government. He succeeded Michael Ronellenfitsch, who had held the office since 2003. Roßnagel was previously a senior professor for public law at the University of Kassel. There he headed the project group constitutional technology design (provet) and is director of the scientific center for information technology design. From 2003 to 2011 he was Vice President of the University of Kassel. Roßnagel’s research focus is data protection law, an area he has been dealing with for more than 30 years. In his new office, the 70-year-old legal scholar wants to pay particular attention to “preventive data protection” with the aim of collecting as little personal information as possible. In Hesse, the position of data protection officer was established as early as 1971 – the first of its kind worldwide.

Professor Roßnagel, what do you think of the accusation that data protection prevents a more effective fight against the pandemic?