This chapter explores the historical evolution of European Union (EU) policy on privacy and data protection as well as the key debates surrounding the issue of privacy and data protection. It provides an overview of the EU's public policy framework for privacy and data protection and the reform package proposed in January 2012. The chapter focuses on the key EU actors, institutions, Communications, Directives, and Regulations in this area. It also provides a critical analysis of the debates related to privacy and data protection within and beyond the EU following the Snowden revelations. The EU's interest in privacy and data protection dates as far back as the 1970s, when the European Commission and the European Parliament demonstrated their concern relating to US company dominance over data processing in a growing European Information Communications Technology market. The chapter concludes with thoughts and reflections on developments and what they mean for public policy challenges in this area within Europe going forward.