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All Points North Podcast #15: Legal expert Susanna Lindroos-Hovinheimo unpacks new data privacy rules

Helsinki University law lecturer Susanna Lindroos-Hovinheimo explains new EU data privacy rules and how they could impact on end users and organisations.

Audio: Yle News

This week All Points North takes a long hard look at an EU regulation on data privacy that took effect after a two-year grace period for member states to get their respective houses in order. Helsinki University researcher and lecturer Susanna Lindroos-Hovinheimo joins the show to talk about what GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) means for ordinary individuals and what will - and will not - change going forward.

Reporter Zena Iovino talks with a representative of small NGOs and businesses who say they're frustrated by a lack of information and guidance on how to implement the new rules, and Lindroos-Hovinheimo helps us understand how the regulation will be policed in real life.

Not to be forgotten, we address concerns from our audience about previous reports that suggest that firms will still be able to sell personal data for sales and marketing purposes, even after the regulation takes effect.

As ever, our programme delves into the weekly archives to take a look some of the stories dominating news headlines. Among them are comments from Prime Minister Juha Sipilä, who dismissed the idea of Finland following in Sweden's footsteps and distributing guidelines for residents to follow in the event of war or some other crisis and an admission by Interior Minister Kai Mykkänen that Finland hasn't done enough to employ immigrants already in the country.

In other news, state rail provider VR has backed down from its previous position and agreed to sell a former engineering property in Helsinki's Vallilla district to former US ambassador Bruce Oreck, who plans to create "Helsinki's Camden", and a new US ambassador took up his post in Helsinki. Robert Pence -- no relation to US VP Mike Pence -- is a wealthy businessman, a Republican campaign donor and literary scholar.

In tech news, Finnish nanotechnology inventor Dr. Tuomo Suntola was awarded the one-million-euro Millennium Technology Prize; Swedish and Finnish researchers announced the development of a new biofuel that could replace gasoline and fuel, and two young designers from southeast Finland have come up with women's swimwear that tackles ocean trash by using material recycled from fishing nets and other plastic waste.

Finally, social media was abuzz with a heated debate over the responsibility of dog owners to keep their animals on a leash in public spaces. The firestorm erupted after a pitbull mauled and killed a smaller dog in Helsinki's waterfront Hernesaari district.

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The All Points North podcast is a weekly look at what's going on in Finland. Subscribe via iTunes (and leave a review!), listen on Spotify and Yle Areena or find it on your favourite podcatching app or via our RSS feed.

This week's show was presented by Denise Wall and Mark B. Odom with guest Lindroos-Hovinheimo. The show's producer was Lydia Taylerson, the reporter was Zena Iovino and this week's sound engineer was Jarno Valkonen.

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