GREECE BACKGROUND CHECK

Background verifications in Greece are comprehensive set of brilliant processes for great use of individuals and organizations to have the immense faith and perfection in verifying the credibility of all type of records, documents, testimonials and credentials utilized by the people in the country. It is necessary to generate the harmonious work environment within organization to have the smooth operations and enhanced productions through reliance among employees of the organizations. Due to all these reason, background verification services in Greece are coming out as the vibrant work of our professionals provide the possibility of getting the confirmed results in certain type of verification. Our services are beneficial for the goods growth of the organizations.

The distinct use of our verification is helpful in providing perfect environment for enhanced growth of the corporate and businesses. Our services will provide the positive impact on the entire processes of the companies to earn the best profits. We are assuring our background verification services in all parts of Greece including Athens, Thessaloniki, Heraklion, Patrai, Peristerion, Iraklion, Larisa, Kallithea, Nikaia, Kalamaria, Volos, Akharnai, Keratsinion, Nea Smirni and Khalandrion. For further information on the same subject, kindly contact us on info@backcheckgroup.com

General Information

GDP USD242.2bn (World ranking 43, World Bank 2013)
Population 11.0 million (World ranking 78, World Bank 2013)
Form of state Parliamentary Republic
Head of government Alexis Tsipras (Prime Minister)
Next elections 2019, legislative

 

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Data Protection

Greece

Contribution Details

Kyriakides Georgopoulos & Daniolos issaias Law firm

Effie Mitsopoulou

Partner

Law

Greece implemented the EU Data Protection Directive 95/46/EC in October 1997 with

Law 2472/1997 on the Protection of Individuals with regard to the Processing of Personal Data,

as amended (“Law”). Such law is currently in force as amended by Laws 3471/2006 3783/2009.

3947/2011, 4024/2011 and 4070/2012.

Enforcement is through the Data Protection Authority (“DPA”).

Definition of Personal Data

“Personal data” shall mean any information relating to the data subject. Personal data is not considered to be the consolidated data of a statistical nature where data subjects may no longer be identified.

Definition of Sensitive Personal Data

“Sensitive data” shall mean the data referring to racial or ethnic origin, political opinions, religious or philosophical beliefs, membership of a trade union, health, social welfare and sex life, criminal charges or convictions as well as membership to societies dealing with the aforementioned areas.

National Data Protection Authority

Data Protection Authority

1-3 Kifissias Avenue

The DPA is responsible for overseeing the Data Protection Law.

Registration

The data controller must notify the DPA in writing about the establishment and operation of a file or the commencement of data processing. In the course of the aforementioned notification, the data controller must necessarily declare the following:

■     His/her name, trade name or distinctive title, as well as his/her address;

■     The address where the file or the main hardware supporting the data processing is

Established;

■     The description of the purpose of the processing of personal data included or about to be

Included in the file;

■     The category of personal data that is being processed or about to be processed or included or about to be included in the file;

■     The time period during which s/he intends to carry out data processing or preserve the file;

■     The recipients or the categories of recipients to whom such personal data is or may be

Communicated;

■     Any transfer and the purpose of such transfer of personal data to third countries; and

■     The basic characteristics of the system and the safety measures taken for the protection of the file or data processing.

The above data is then registered with the Files and Data Processing Register kept by the DPA. Any modification of the above data must be communicated in writing and without any undue delay by the data controller to the DPA.

Data Protection officers

There is no requirement in Greece for organizations to appoint a data protection officer.

Collection and Processing

Collection and processing of personal data is permitted only when the data subject has given his/her consent. Exceptionally, data may be processed even without such consent, but only if:

■     processing is necessary for the execution of a contract to which the data subject is party or in

Order to take steps at the request of the data subject prior to entering into a contract;

■     processing is necessary for the compliance with a legal obligation to which the data

Controller is subject;

■     processing is necessary in order to protect the vital interests of the data subject, if s/he is physically or legally incapable of giving his/her consent;

■     processing is necessary for the performance of a task carried out in the public interest or a project carried out in the exercise of public function by a public authority or assigned by it to the data controller or a third party to whom such data are communicated; or

■     processing is absolutely necessary for the purposes of a legitimate interest pursued by the data controller or a third party or third parties to whom the data is communicated and on condition that such a legitimate interest evidently prevails over the rights and interests of the persons to whom the data refer and that their fundamental freedoms are not affected.

Processing sensitive personal data:

The collection and processing of sensitive data is prohibited. Exceptionally, the collection and processing of sensitive data, as well as the establishment and operation of the relevant file, is permitted by the DPA, when one or more of the following conditions occur:

■     the data subject has given his/her written consent, unless such consent has been extracted in a manner contrary to the law or bonos mores or if law provides that any consent given may not lift the relevant prohibition;

■     processing is necessary to protect the vital interests of the data subject or the interests provided for by the law of a third party, if s/he is physically or legally incapable of giving his/ her consent;

■     processing relates to data made public by the data subject or is necessary for the recognition, exercise or defense of rights in a court of justice or before a disciplinary body;

■     processing relates to health matters and is carried out by a health professional subject to the obligation of professional secrecy or relevant codes of conduct, provided that such processing is necessary for the purposes of preventive medicine, medical diagnosis, the provision of care or treatment or the management of health care services;

■     processing is carried out by a Public Authority and is necessary for the purposes of a) national security, b) criminal or correctional policy and pertains to the detection of offences, criminal convictions or security measures, c) protection of public health or d) the exercise of public control on fiscal or social services;

■     processing is carried out exclusively for research and scientific purposes provided that anonymity is maintained and all necessary measures for the protection of the persons involved are taken; or

■     Processing concerns data pertaining to public figures, provided that such data are in connection with the holding of public office or the management of third parties’ interests, and is carried out solely for journalistic purposes. The DPA may grant a permit only if such processing is absolutely necessary in order to ensure the right to information on matters of public interest, as well as within the framework of literary expression and provided that the right to protection of private and family life is not violated in any way whatsoever.

The DPA grants a permit for the collection and processing of sensitive data, as well as a permit

For the establishment and operation of the relevant file, upon request of the data controller. The permit is issued for a specific period of time, depending on the purpose of the data processing. It may be renewed upon request of the data controller.

The permit must necessarily contain the following:

■     The full name or trade name or distinctive title, as well as the address, of the data controller

and his/her representative, if any;

■     The address of the place where the file is established;

■     The categories of personal data which are allowed to be included in the file;

■     The time period for which the permit is granted;

■     The terms and conditions, if any, imposed by the DPA for the establishment and operation of the file; and

■     The obligation to disclose the recipient or recipients as soon as they are identified.

A copy of the permit is registered with the Permits Register kept by the DPA. Any change in the above data must be communicated without undue delay to the DPA. Any change other than a change of address of the data controller or his/her representative must entail the issuance of a new permit, provided that the terms and conditions stipulated by law are fulfilled.

Transfer

The transfer of personal data is permitted:

■     For member states of the European Union;

■     For a non-member of the European Union following a permit granted by the DPA if it deems that the country in question guarantees an adequate level of protection. For this purpose it shall particularly take into account the nature of the data, the purpose and the duration of the processing, the relevant general and particular rules of law, the codes of conduct, the security measures for the protection of personal data, as well as the protection level in the countries

of origin, transit and final destination of the data. A permit by the DPA is not required if the European Commission has decided, on the basis of the process of article 31, paragraph 2 of Directive 95/46/EC of the Parliament and the Council of 24 October 1995, that the country in question guarantees an adequate level of protection, in the sense of article 25 of the aforementioned Directive;

The transfer of personal data to a non-member state of the European Union which does not ensure an adequate level of protection is exceptionally allowed only following a permit granted by the DPA, provided that one or more of the following conditions occur:

■     the data subject has consented to such transfer, unless such consent has been extracted in a

Manner contrary to the law or bonus mores; and

■     the transfer is necessary:

–  in order to protect the vital interests of the data subject, provided s/he is physically or legally incapable of giving his/her consent;

–  for the conclusion and performance of a contract between the data subject and the data controller or between the data controller and a third party in the interest of the data

subject, if he/she is incapable of giving his/her consent; or

–  for the implementation of pre contractual measures taken in response to the data subject’s

Request;

■     the transfer is necessary in order to address an exceptional need and safeguard a superior public interest, especially for the performance of a cooperation agreement with the

public authorities of the other country, provided that the data controller provides adequate safeguards with respect to the protection of privacy and fundamental liberties and the exercise of the corresponding rights;

■     the transfer is necessary for the establishment, exercise or defense of a right in court;

■     the transfer is made from a public register which by law is intended to provide information to the public and which is accessible by the public or by any person who can demonstrate legitimate interest, provided that the conditions set out by law for access to such register are in each particular case fulfilled; or

■     the data controller shall provide adequate safeguards with respect to the protection of the data subjects’ personal data and the exercise of their rights, when the safeguards arise from conventional clauses which are in accordance with the regulations of the Law. A permit

is not required; in case of the Standard Contractual Clauses approved by the European Commission; in cases where the data importer has been registered with the Safe Harbor Framework; and finally in cases where the Binding Corporate Rules have been executed.

Security

The processing of personal data must be confidential. It must be carried out solely and exclusively by persons acting under the authority of the data controller or the processor and upon his/her instructions.

In order to carry out data processing the data controller must choose persons with

Corresponding professional qualifications providing sufficient guarantees in respect of technical expertise and personal integrity to ensure such confidentiality.

The data controller must implement appropriate organizational and technical measures to secure data and protect it against accidental or unlawful destruction, accidental loss, alteration, unauthorized disclosure or access as well as any other form of unlawful processing. Such measures must ensure a level of security appropriate to the risks presented by processing and the nature of the data subject to processing.

If the data processing is carried out on behalf of the data controller, by a person not dependent upon him, the relevant assignment must necessarily be in writing. Such assignment must necessarily provide that the processor carries out such data processing only on instructions from the data controller and that all other confidentiality obligations must mutatis mutandis

be borne by him.

Breach notification

There is no mandatory requirement in the Law to report data security breaches or losses to the

DPA or to data subjects.

Enforcement

The DPA may impose on the data controllers or on their representatives, if any, the following administrative sanctions for breach of their duties arising from the Law as well as from any other regulation on the protection of individuals from the processing of personal data:

■     a warning with an order for the violation to cease within a specified time limit;

■     a fine amounting between EUR 880 and EUR 147,000;

■     a temporary revocation of the permit;

■     a definitive revocation of the permit; or

■     the destruction of the file or a ban of the processing and the destruction, return or locking of the relevant data.

In addition the following penal sanctions may be imposed:

Anyone who fails to notify the DPA of the establishment or the operation of a file or any change in the terms and conditions regarding the granting of the permit will be punished by imprisonment for up to three years and a fine amounting between EUR 2,940 and EUR 14,705.

Anyone who keeps a file without permit or in breach of the terms and conditions referred to in the DPA’s permit, will be punished by imprisonment for a period of at least one year and a fine amounting between EUR 2,940 and EUR 14,705.

Anyone who proceeds to the interconnection of files without notifying the DPA accordingly will be punished by imprisonment for up to three years and a fine amounting between EUR 2,940

and EUR 14,705. Anyone who proceeds to the interconnection of files without the DPA’s permit, wherever such permit is required, or in breach of the terms of the permit granted to him, will be punished by imprisonment for a period of at least one year and a fine amounting between EUR

2,940 and EUR 14,705.

Anyone who unlawfully interferes in any way whatsoever with a personal data file or takes notice of such data or extracts, alters, affects in a harmful manner, destroys, processes, transfers, discloses, makes accessible to unauthorized persons or permits such persons to take notice of such data or anyone who exploits such data in any way whatsoever, will be punished by imprisonment and a fine and, regarding sensitive data, by imprisonment for a period of

at least one year and a fine amounting between EUR 2,940 Euros and EUR 29,411, unless otherwise subject to more serious sanctions.

Any data controller who does not comply with decisions issued by the DPA in the exercise of the right of access, in the exercise of the right to object, as well as with acts imposing the administrative sanctions will be punished by imprisonment for a period of at least two years and a fine amounting between EUR 2,940 and EUR 14,705. The sanctions referred to in the preceding sentence will also apply to any data controller who transfers personal data, in breach of the Law.

If the data controller is not a natural person, then the representative(s) of the legal entity shall be liable.

Finally, any natural person or legal entity of private law, who in breach of the Law, causes material damage will be liable for damages in full. If the same causes non pecuniary damage, s/he will be liable for compensation. Liability subsists even when said person or entity should have known that such damage could be brought about. The compensation payable according to article 932 of the Civil Code for non-pecuniary damage caused in breach of the Law has been set at the amount of at least EUR 5,882, unless the plaintiff claims a lesser amount or the said breach was due to negligence. Such compensation shall be awarded irrespective of the claim for damages.

Electronic Marketing

Electronic marketing is regulated by Law 3471/2006 “for the protection of personal data and privacy in electronic communications” (“The Law”), in combination with the general provisions of Law 2472/1997 “for the protection of individuals from the processing of personal data” (“The Data Protection Act”).

According to the provisions of article 11 of the Law, data processing for electronic marketing purposes is allowed only upon the individuals’ prior express consent. The said article prohibits the use of automated calling systems for marketing purposes to subscribers that have previously declared to the public electronic communications services providers (“CSPs”) that they do not wish to receive such calls in general. The CSPs must register

these declarations for free on a separate publicly accessible list.

Personal data (such as e-mail addresses) that have been legally obtained in the course of sales of products, provision of services or any other transaction may be used for electronic marketing purposes, without the receiver’s prior consent thereto, provided that the receiver of such email has the possibility to “opt out” for free to the collection and processing of his/ her personal data for the aforementioned purposes.

Direct marketing emails or advertising emails of any kind are absolutely prohibited, when the identity of the sender is disguised or concealed and also when no valid address, to which the receivers can address requests for the termination of such communications, is provided.

Online Privacy (Including Cookies and Location Data)

Articles 4 and 6 of the Law (as amended by Directive 2009/136/EC) deals with the collection of location and traffic data by CSPs and the use of cookies and similar technologies

Traffic data – Traffic data of subscribers or users held by a CSP must be erased or anonymised after the termination of a communication, unless they are retained for one the following reasons:

■     The billing of subscribers and the payment of interconnections, provided that the subscribers are informed of the categories of traffic data that are being processed and the duration of processing, which must not exceed 12 months from the date of the communication (unless the bill is doubtable or unpaid).

■     Marketing of electronic communications services or value added services, to the extent that traffic data processing is absolutely necessary and following the subscriber’s or the user’s prior express consent thereto, after his/her notification regarding the categories of traffic

Data that are being processed and the duration of the processing. Such consent may be freely recalled. The provision of electronic communication services by the CSP must not depend

on the subscriber’s consent to the processing of his/her traffic data for other purposes (eg. Marketing purposes).

Location data – Location data may only be processed for the provision of value added service, only if such data are anonymised or with the subscriber’s/ user’s express consent, to the extent and for the duration for which such processing is absolutely necessary. The CSP must previously notify the user or the subscriber of the categories of location data that are being processed, the purposes and the duration of the processing as well as of the third parties to which the data

will be transmitted for value added services provision. The subscriber’s/user’s consent may be freely recalled and the “opt out” possibility must be provided to the subscriber by the CSP free of charge and with simple means, every time he is connected to the network or in each transmission of communication.

Location data processing is allowed exceptionally without the subscriber’s/user’s prior consent to authorities dealing with emergencies, such as prosecution authorities, first aid or fire-brigade authorities, when location of the caller is necessary for serving such emergency purposes.

Cookie compliance – The use and storage of cookies and similar technologies is allowed when the subscriber/user has provided his express consent, after his/her comprehensive and detailed notification by the CSP. The subscriber’s consent may be provided through the necessary browser adjustments or through the use of other applications.

The latter do not prevent the technical storage or use of cookies for purposes relating exclusively to the transmission of a communication thorough an electronic communications network or the provision of an information society service for which the subscriber or the user has specifically requested. The Data Protection Authority is the competent authority for the issuance of an Act, which will regulate the ways such services will be provided and the subscribers’ consent will be declared.

Article second of Law 2802 of 2000 Substitution of Criminal Code provisions

The provisions of articles 235 and 236 of the Criminal Code are substituted as follows:

“Article 235 (as amended by Law 2802 of 2000). Passive Bribery. The official who, in violation of his duties claims or receives, directly or through mediation of a third party, for himself or for a third party, benefits of any nature or accepts a promise thereof, in order to proceed in an act or failure relevant to his duties or contravening the same is punished by imprisonment of at least one year”.

“Article 236 (as amended by Law 2802 of 2000). Active Bribery. Anyone promising or offering to an official, directly or by mediation of a third party, benefits of any nature for himself or for a third party, so that said official, in violation of his duties, proceeds to an act or failure relevant to his duties or contravening the same is punished by the penalty of article 235. The act remains unpunished, in case the perpetrator by his own free will and prior to his examination one way or another for the above act, notifies the same to the magistrate court public prosecutor or to any investigating official or other competent authority, by surrendering a written report or verbally in which case a relevant report is being drawn up. In this case the gift or the benefit which has been eventually confiscated or surrendered to the investigator is rendered to the person who gave it and the provision of article 238 does not apply in this case”.

Article 237 of the Criminal Code

Bribery of a Judge

1. Whoever is called upon by law to perform the duties of a judge or of an arbitrator and he demands or accepts gifts or other benefits which he is not entitled to claim, or when he accepts the promise that he will receive such gifts or benefits so that he will judge or handle an assigned case in favour or against someone else, is punished with at least a year of imprisonment (up to five years).

2. Whoever offers, promises or gives such gifts or benefits with the same objective to any of the persons mentioned in paragraph 1 or to a relative of his, is punished with a minimum of three months imprisonment (maximum five years).

Article 159 of the Criminal Code

Bribery

1. Anyone who in relation with any election or vote conducted by the Parliament or any committee thereof proposes, offers or promises to a deputy gifts or any other benefits which are not due to him as exchange in order not to participate to such election or vote or to vote in a specific manner is punished by imprisonment up to two years as well as by fine.

2. The deputy who in relation with any of the as above in paragraph 1 of the present article elections or votes accepts the offer or promise of gifts or other benefits which are not due to him or claims the same as an exchange in order not to participate to the election or the vote or to vote in a specific manner, is punished by imprisonment as well as by fine.

3. Anyone who in relation with any election or vote conducted by the Prefectural, municipal or communal council of any other local administration council or committee or any of the above, proposes, offers or promises to any member thereof gifts or any other benefits which are not due to him as exchange in order not to participate in such election or vote or to vote in a specific manner is punished by imprisonment up to one year as well as by fine.

4. The counsel who in relation to any of the elections or votes of paragraph 3 of the present article accepts the offer of promises of gifts or of other benefits which are not due to him or claims the same as an exchange in order not to participate in the election or the vote or to vote in a specific manner, is punished by imprisonment up to one year as well as by fine.

5. The court may apart such penalties impose the deprivation of offices and posts or article 63, no 1.

Article 12 of the Law 5227 of 1931

1. An imprisonment of at least three months and a fine of five thousand (5.000) up to one hundred thousand (100.000) GRD is imposed as punishment to any official of the State or Municipalities or Communities, or any representative or instrument or member of boards of the in article 1 of the present described persons, if they directly or indirectly accept offers or promises of gifts or other benefits or if they claim such as exchange for the achievement of the in the previous article results or in order to vote in a specific manner or abstain on purpose from voting or in order to exercise their influence and power or offer somehow their assistance. The same penalty is imposed to the members of Legislative Bodies or Municipal or Communal Boards, in case they accept gifts or other benefits in property in relation to the exercise of their duties or in order to exercise their influence or power or in order to somehow offer their assistance for the achievement of the in the previous article set forth results.

2. The same penalties are imposed to whom who for one of the above purposes gives or promises to give to the above persons gifts or other benefits as well as whom who offers such, even if the same have not been accepted.

The same penalties, as well, are imposed to a state official and the one who engaged him for any service and at any pay, provided such official participates to boards which give opinion on matters which are relevant to the works or business of the person who engaged him.

3. The gravest definitions of the Criminal Law are kept in force.

Article 2 of Law 2802 of 2000

Passive bribery

1. For the purposes of the present convention, an official shall have committed passive bribery when, intentionally he claims or receives, directly or through mediation of a third party, for himself or for a third party, benefits of any nature or accepts a promise thereof, in order to execute or not execute an act belonging to his duties or at the exercise of his duties, in violation of his official duties.

2. Each country member takes the necessary measures for securing that the behaviour stated in paragraph 1 constitutes criminal offence.

Article 3 of Law 2802 of 2000

Active bribery

1. For the purposes of the present convention, active bribery shall be committed when anyone, intentionally promises or gives to an official, directly or by mediation of a third party, any kind of benefits for himself or for a third party, so that such official executes or does not execute an act belonging to his duties or at the exercise of his duties, in violation of his official duties.

2. Each country member takes the necessary measures for securing that the behaviour stated in paragraph 1 constitutes criminal offence.

Article 2 of the Law 2803 of 2000

Passive Bribery

1. For the purposes of the present protocol, an official shall have committed passive bribery when, intentionally he claims or receives, directly or through mediation of a third party, for himself or for a third party, benefits of any nature or accepts a promise thereof, in order to execute or not execute an act, in a way which contravenes his official duties, within the framework of his duties or at the execution of his duties, which damages or may damage the economic interests of the European Community.

2. Each country member takes the necessary measures for securing that the behaviour stated in paragraph 1 constitutes criminal offence.

Article 3 of the Law 2803 of 2000

Active Bribery

1. For the purposes of the present convention, active bribery shall be committed when anyone, intentionally promises or gives to an official, directly or by mediation of a third party, any kind of benefits for himself or for a third party, so that such official executes or does not execute an act, in a way contravening his official duties, within the framework of his duties, which damages or may damage the economic interests of the European Community.

2. Each country member takes the necessary measures for securing that the behaviour stated in paragraph 1 constitutes criminal offence.

Article fourth of Law 2802 of 2000

Ranking of community clerks and officials with the national ones

1. The offence of bribery, when committed by or towards Members of the European Community Commission, the European Parliament, the European Community Court or Court of Auditors at the exercise of their duties, is punished in the same way with the one committed by or towards the Ministers of the Greek Parliament and the members of the Greek Supreme Courts, at the exercise of their duties. However, the special procedural provisions referred to the persecution and competence of the courts, do not apply. Said persons are judged by the court of appeal.

2. The provisions of treaties for the foundation of the European Community, the protocol regarding the privileges and immunities of the European Community, the Court’s organisations, as well as the provisions enacted for their implementation, apply fully, as regards to removal of immunities of the as above persons.

Article tenth of the Law 2803 of 2000

Ranking of community clerks and officials with the national ones

2. The punishable acts, provided by article three, four, five, six and nine of the present law, as well as those set forth in the previous paragraph whenever committed by members of the European Community Commission, of the European Parliament, of the European Community Court or Court of Auditors or against such persons, are punished as those committed by the Ministers of the Greek Government, the elected members of the Greek Parliament and the members of the Greek Supreme Courts, at the execution of their duties or against such persons. However, the special procedural provisions regarding the Ministers’ liability, including the provisions referring to the criminal persecution and the competence of courts, do not apply.

3. The provisions of treaties for the foundation of the European Community, the protocol regarding the privileges and immunities of the European Community, the Court’s organisations, as well as the provisions enacted for their implementation, apply fully, as regards the removal of immunities of the as above persons.

Article 2 of the Law 2656 of 2000

Bribery of a foreign public official

1. Whom, who at the execution of international business activities and with the purpose to acquire or keep an unfair business or other, non-due, advantage, offers, promises or gives, himself or by a third party, gifts or other non-due exchange to a foreign public official, on behalf of himself or of a third party, in order to make him proceed to an act or failure which is relevant to his service or which contravenes his duties, is punished by imprisonment of at least one year.

2. The offered gifts and their value are confiscated.

Article 3 of the Law 2656 of 2000

Bribery of a foreign public official

A foreign public official bribery perpetration Facilitation or concealing Whom who in order to facilitate or conceal the perpetration of under article second act:

1. keeps accounts outside his business books

2. transacts outside the books or inadequately specified therein

3. enter non-existing charges or determined erroneously their object, or

4. uses documents with false content, is punished by imprisonment up to three years, in case his act is not punished more gravely by virtue of another provision.

Article 11 of the Law 5227 of 1931

An imprisonment of at least three months and a fine of ten thousand (10.000) up to one million (1.000.000) GRD is imposed as punishment to whom who falsely or truly alleges that due to his relations or his capacity or in general due to his influence and power, he may succeed in favour of a third party or himself, but on the account of a third party, the entering to any contract with the State or the other in article 1 of the present mentioned persons, or regardless to any contract causes any deed or failure of such persons, of their employees, representatives or instruments, receives a fee or other exchange or gets out a promise of such fee or exchange in favour of himself or of a third party.

Article 27 of the Law 2429 of 1996

Criminal sanctions

1. Anyone under check, who acquires or gives to a third party benefit of property taking advantage of his capacity, is punished by imprisonment of at east three (3) years and by fine. To the culpable is imposed as well deprivation of his political rights from one (1) up to five (5) years. The same penalties apply for the spouses and the children thereof who acquired or gave to a third party benefits of property taking advantage of the capacity of the under check person.

2. In case the benefit of property of the convicted person is a movable or immovable thing or ideal share of a thing or a specific amount of money, confiscation is ordered as attendant penalty.

3. Anyone under check who fails to file the under articles 24 and 25 statement or knowingly files inexact particulars, is punished by imprisonment of at least two (2) years and by fine. To the culpable is imposed as well deprivation of his political rights from one (1) up to four (4) years. In case the deed has been committed by negligence, the penalty imposed is imprisonment of three(3) months up to two (2) years.

4. A third party denying the granting of data and information as well as anyone who by any means prevents the under the previous article check is punished by imprisonment of at least six (6) months. The same punishment is imposed to the one who only publishes only part of the statement in violation of paragraph 4 article 25.

Article 238 of the Criminal Code

Confiscation of the gifts

In all cases of articles 235, 236 and 237, the gifts which were given or their equivalent value is confiscated by the relevant decision.

Article 187 of the Criminal Code (modified)

Criminal organisation

1. A sentence of imprisonment of up to ten years is imposed to any person who sets up or is included as member in a structured group with continuous activity, made up of three or more persons (organisation) and seeks to commit felonies provided for by articles 207 (forgery), 208 (circulation of forged money), 216 (falsification), 218 (falsification and abuse of stamps), 242 (false testimony, adulteration), 264 (arson), 265 (arson to forests), 268 (flood), 270 (explosion), 272 (violations relating to explosive materials), 277 (sinking of ship), 279 (poisoning of springs and food), 291 (disturbance of safety of trains, ships and aircrafts), 299 (intentional murder), 310 (gross physical injury), 322 (abduction), 325 (slave trafficking), 324 (abduction of minors), 327 (involuntary kidnapping), 336 (rape), 338 (abuse to lechery), 339 (child seduction), 374 (gross cases of theft), 375 (defalcation), 380 (robbery), 385 (extortion), 386 (fraud), 386A (computer fraud), 404 (usury), as well as felonies provided for in the legislation on narcotics, weapons, explosive materials and protection from materials emitting radiation harmful to people.

2. Any person who, by threat or use of force against judicial functionaries, interrogating or judicial servants, witnesses, experts and interpreters or by bride to the said persons, attempts to cancel the discovery or prosecution and punishment of the offences of the previous paragraph, is punished by imprisonment of at least one year.

3. Any person who, apart from the cases of paragraph 1, joins another person to commit a felony (gang) is punished by imprisonment of at least six months. The culprit is punished by imprisonment of at least three months if the joining under the previous sentence was carried out to commit a misdemeanour, punished by imprisonment of at least one year, by which financial or other material gain or damage to life, physical integrity or sexual freedom are sought.

4. The manufacture, supply or possession of weapons, explosive materials and chemical or biological materials or materials emitting radiation harmful to people, aiming at serving the purposes of the organisation of paragraph 1 or the gang of paragraph 3 or the pursuit of financial or other material gain of their members are aggravating circumstances. The non commission of any of the sought crimes of paragraphs 1 and 3 are extenuating circumstances. The simply mental complicity to the crimes of formation or participation under paragraph 1 or gang under paragraph 3 is not punished if the members of the organisation or the gang do not seek financial or other material gain.

5. The provisions of the present article are also applicable when the punishable actions provided for hereby were committed abroad by a Greek citizen or were made against a Greek citizen or legal entity with registered offices in Greece or against the Greek state, even if they are not punishable under the laws of the country in which they were committed.

Police Background Check Procedures

Who can apply?

• Residents and citizens may apply.
• Third parties are not permitted to apply.

Where?

• Applications can be made online, by post, in person, by phone or if overseas at a Greek Embassy.
• Local applicants may also apply to Citizen Service Centres anywhere in the country, or calling 1502 inside Greece.

What must the applicant supply?

The application form requires the following information:
• Name/Surname
• Parents ́ names
• Place and date of birth
• ID card number/place of issue
• Passport number/country
• Address
• Telephone number
• Signature

What are the costs / turnaround times?

• There is no charge for this service (in person only).
• The turnaround is ten days inside Greece on receipt of form.
• International applications may have a delay due to postal process.
• No fast track service available.

Contact Details

The Greek Embassy in London contains details of how to apply: http://www.greekembassy.org.uk/ConsularAffairs/MajorConsularIssues/PenalRecordCertificate.aspx
Embassy of Greece
1A Holland Park
W11 3TP
London UK
Tel: + 44 (20) 72293850
Fax: + 44 (20) 72297221
For more information contact:
Ministry of Justice
Mesogion Str. 96
Athens 115-26
Tel: (+30) 210 776 7300

Greece – Know Your Customer (KYC) Rules

Greece is considered to be a regional financial center in the developing Balkans, as well as a bridge between Europe and the Middle East. Official corruption, the presence of organized crime, and a large shadow economy make the country vulnerable to money laundering and terrorist financing. Greek law enforcement proceedings indicate that Greece is vulnerable to narcotics trafficking, trafficking in persons and illegal immigration, prostitution, smuggling of cigarettes and other contraband, serious fraud or theft, illicit gaming activities, and large scale tax evasion. Anecdotal evidence of illicit transactions suggests an increase in financial crimes in the past few years and that criminal organizations (some with links to terrorist groups) increasingly are trying to use the Greek banking system to launder illicit proceeds.

Criminally-derived proceeds historically are most commonly invested in real estate, the lottery, and the stock market. Criminal organizations from southeastern Europe and the Balkan region are responsible for a large percentage of the crime that generates illicit funds. The widespread use of cash facilitates a gray economy as well as tax evasion, though as part of Greece‘s reform commitments under its European Union (EU)-IMF bailout program, the government is trying to crack down on both trends. Due to the large informal economy – estimated by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development and others to be between 25 and 37 percent of GDP – it is difficult to determine the value of goods smuggled into the country, including whether any of the smuggled goods are funded by narcotic or other illicit proceeds. There is increasing evidence that domestic terrorist groups are involved with drug trafficking.

KNOW-YOUR-CUSTOMER (KYC) RULES:

Enhanced due diligence procedures for PEPs:

PEP is an abbreviation for Politically Exposed Person, a term that describes a person who has been entrusted with a prominent public function, or an individual who is closely related to such a person. The terms PEP, Politically Exposed Person and Senior Foreign Political Figure are often used interchangeably

    • Foreign PEP: YES
    • Domestic PEP: NO

Greece – KYC covered entities

The following is a list of Know Your Customer entities covered by Greek Law:

    • Banks, savings banks, and cooperative banks
    • Credit companies, money remitters, financial leasing and factoring companies, bureaux de change, and postal companies
    • Stock brokers, investment services firms, and collective and mutual funds
    • Life insurance companies and insurance intermediaries
    • Accountants, auditors, and audit firms
    • Tax consultants, tax experts, and related firms
    • Real estate agents and companies
    • Casinos (including internet casinos) and entities engaging in gaming activities
    • Auction houses, dealers in high value goods, auctioneers, and pawnbrokers
    • Notaries, lawyers, and persons providing services to companies and trusts

Greece – Suspicious Transaction Reporting (STR) Requirements:

Number of STRs received and time frame: 3,479 in 2011

Number of CTRs received and time frame: Not applicable

The following is a list of STR covered entities covered by Greek Law:

    • Banks, savings banks, and cooperative banks
    • Credit companies, money remitters, financial leasing and factoring companies, bureaux de change, and postal companies
    • Stock brokers, investment services firms, and collective and mutual funds
    • Life insurance companies and insurance intermediaries
    • Accountants, auditors, and audit firms
    • Tax consultants, tax experts, and related firms
    • Real estate agents and companies
    • Casinos (including internet casinos) and entities engaging in gaming activities
    • Auction houses, dealers in high value goods, auctioneers, and pawnbrokers
    • Notaries, lawyers, and persons providing services to companies and trusts

MONEY LAUNDERING CRIMINAL PROSECUTIONS/CONVICTIONS:

Prosecutions: 134 in 2011
Convictions: 58 in the first half of 2011

ENFORCEMENT AND IMPLEMENTATION ISSUES AND COMMENTS:

The Government of Greece (GOG) has been working to improve the effectiveness of the Greek financial intelligence unit (FIU). Greek authorities have hired sufficient staff to carry out the extensive functions with which the FIU is tasked. The GOG has also made available adequate financial resources to ensure the FIU is able to fulfill its responsibilities, ensure its powers are in line with the international standards related to a financial intelligence unit, and ensure its technical and data management systems and capacities support its functions.

Greece still needs to ensure that its confiscation regime is more effectively implemented and used. While the 2008 anti-money laundering/countering the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) law contains provisions allowing civil asset forfeiture under special circumstances, Greek authorities advise it is not practical to launch civil procedures and currently do not do so. The government also should develop an arrangement for the sharing of seized assets with third party jurisdictions that assist in the conduct of investigations.

In March 2011, an amendment to the 2008 AML/CFT law (Law 3932/A49/10-3-2011) established a new entity, the Financial Sanctions Unit (FSU). The FSU is tasked with designating terrorists in accordance with UNSCR 1373, outside the EU listing system, and issuing executive orders to freeze the assets of internationally designated terrorists. It is unclear if the executive order procedure applies to suspected terrorists designated domestically. The GOG has provided guidance to financial institutions and designated non-financial businesses and professions on freezing assets without delay, and has begun to monitor for compliance, though the effectiveness of the monitoring is still undetermined. The GOG is authorized to impose sanctions on entities for noncompliance with freeze orders.

While Greece has made positive strides in the supervision area, particularly with its transfer of supervisory powers over the insurance sector to the Bank of Greece, a shortage of personnel at the Hellenic Capital Markets Commission (which supervises securities firms, brokers, other financial intermediaries, and clearing houses) remains, but is difficult to address in light of a general hiring freeze in the public sector due to Greece‘s debt crisis. It also remains unclear whether the Ministry of Justice has enough resources available to deal with money laundering or terrorist finance related cases.

The GOG has instituted regulatory measures requiring that transactions above €3,000 (approximately $3,850) be executed with credit cards, checks or cashiers‘ checks and that all business-to-business transactions in excess of €3,000 (approximately $3,850) be carried out through checks or bank account transfers. All credit and financial institutions, including payment institutions, must also report on a monthly basis all transfers of funds abroad executed by credit card, check or wire transfer. Nevertheless, the GOG should adopt a system for reporting large currency transactions across all regulated sectors and explicitly abolish company-issued bearer shares. It should also continue to improve enforcement of its cross-border currency reporting requirements and improve efforts to deter the smuggling of currency across its borders. Greece also should ensure that companies operating within its free trade zones are subject to the same level of enforcement of AML/CFT controls as other sectors and work steadfastly to bring charitable and nonprofit organizations under the AML/CFT regime.

Risk

Sovereign risk

The sustainability of Greece’s public debt (173% of GDP), is a key concern, given government’s repudiation of the bail-out programme, which could result in a breakdown in relations with external creditors and loss of access to financing. The Economist Intelligence Unit’s sovereign rating indicates a high probability of default; our baseline forecast is that Greece will agree a new reform programme and receive further debt relief, possibly in the form of longer maturities and/or cuts in interest rates.

Banking sector risk

A band change from B to CCC has been prompted by a seven-point deterioration in the score. If Greece fails to reach agreement with its euro-zone creditors, the risk of a run on bank deposits and the imposition of capital controls will rise. The ECB has tightened Greek banks’ access to liquidity and warned that it might withdraw emergency funding if there is no agreement.

Political risk

A band change from CCC to CC reflects heightened political risk following the formation of a coalition government, comprising left-wing Syriza and ultra-right Independent Greeks (IG). Given the potential for intra-coalition disagreement, we do not expect the government to last for more than 12-18 months.

Economic structure risk

The current account is set to record modest surpluses to 2018, but both public and external debt/GDP ratios remain very high.

Travel Risk

Security

The decision to travel is your responsibility. You are also responsible for your personal safety abroad. The purpose of this Travel Advice is to provide up-to-date information to enable you to make well-informed decisions.

Strikes and

Demonstrations

Strikes and demonstrations in Athens are a common occurrence due to austerity measures imposed by the government. Demonstrations and marches occur largely in the centre of Athens in Syntagma Square and in front of the Parliament building. Avoid all public gatherings and demonstrations and stay away from areas where they can occur as they may turn violent without notice. Monitor local media and follow the advice of local authorities.

Strikes and demonstrations affecting public health services and transportation, such as trains, buses, taxi, metro, ferries and cruise ships, are usually announced in advance. Road closures may occur at short notice, particularly in Athens. Flights may be disrupted and access to airports and ports may be difficult. Contact your airline to check the status of your flight and allow plenty of time to make your way to the airport.

Terrorism

There have been periodic bomb attacks by anarchists and ultra-leftist militant groups against the Greek state, Greek institutions, and Western commercial and diplomatic interests on the mainland, including in Athens and Thessaloniki. Several bomb and arson attacks have occurred in urban areas. To enhance public safety, police officers conduct patrols in subway stations, bus terminals and other public places.

Several attacks occurred in Athens in January 2013 in response to the latest round of austerity measures, as well as measures dealing with crime and corruption that were imposed by the Greek government.

Crime

Petty crime (pickpocketing, purse snatching, luggage theft, muggings) occurs in tourist areas and on public transport. Do not walk in the Athens districts of Monastiraki and Omonia, or around the two railway stations of Larissa and Peloponissos after dark. Avoid secluded areas, parks, and down-market bars and restaurants. Remain vigilant at all times.

Women should not accept rides from strangers or casual acquaintances. Sexual assaults have occurred, particularly on the islands.

Attacks against non-Caucasians have been reported in Athens and condemned by local authorities.

Road travel

The traffic fatality rate in Greece is among the highest in the European Union. Poor driving standards, aggressive drivers, difficult terrain and heavy traffic create hazards.

Driving motorbikes, scooters and mopeds is particularly dangerous, especially on the islands. Travellers must obtain insurance coverage. A helmet is a legal requirement. Stiff fines can be imposed for non-compliance.

Small, unlicensed rental agencies (especially on the islands) do not always offer vehicles that comply with up-to-date safety standards. Read the rental contract carefully.

In the event of an accident, wait until the police arrive; otherwise the insurance may not be valid.

Public Transportation

Accidents have occurred due to poor safety standards on regional buses and ferries. Use reputable bus and ferry operators.

See Transportation Safety in order to verify if national airlines meet safety standards.

General safety information

Exercise normal safety precautions. Ensure that your personal belongings, passports and other travel documents are secure at all times. Do not show signs of affluence and avoid carrying large sums of cash.

Tourist facilities are widely available.

Some border areas are militarily sensitive and should be avoided, including the north-northwest zone.

Emergency services

Dial 112 for emergency assistance.

Address Format

RECIPIENT

STREET_NAME HOUSE_NUMBER
POSTAL_CODE LOCALITY
GREECE

Sample

Kostas Engonopoulos
Konstandinupoleos 51
546 42 THESSALONIKI
GREECE

Summary

Calendar GMT Reference Actual Previous Consensus Forecast
2015-02-13 10:00 AM Q4 1.7% 1.9% 2.2% 2%
2015-02-27 10:30 AM Q4 1.2% 1.6% 1.7% 1.7%
2015-05-13 10:00 AM Q1 0.3% 1.7% 0.2% 0.1%
2015-05-29 10:00 AM Q1 1.2%
2015-08-13 10:00 AM Q2 3.58%
2015-08-28 10:00 AM Q2

 

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