About us

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CUIC stands for Consumers United in Court. This can also be pronounced as 'See you in court'. CUIC stands up for the protection of privacy and data of consumers.

The CUIC Foundation's mission is to conduct strategic class actions against any public or private actor violating the right of data protection. This way, we want to enforce privacy and not just leave it as nice words on paper. Furthermore, we work to raise awareness about privacy in a world where technology becomes increasingly dominant in our everyday life.

The CUIC Foundation is an independent non-profit organization. This means that we act for or on behalf of consumers and have no commercial interests. CUIC is litigating in the Netherlands under collective action legislation. CUIC is an initiative of Privacy First and None of Your Business (noyb), two leading privacy organizations that have been successfully fighting and litigating to ensure an actual data protection for many years.

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Collective action

Collective action is gaining ground in the Netherlands. This is necessary because many organizations regard privacy as a nuisance instead of a fundamental right. Your right not to be digitally tracked everywhere, digitally as well as physically, for example; or the right not to have your data traded, is too often fiddled with. It is almost impossible for individual consumers to effectively protect their privacy. Legislation makes collective action possible and with it we want to make companies that don't want to listen feel it. We do this through strategic litigation.

CUIC subscribes to the Claim Code. This is a governance code for foundations whose aim is to represent collective interests. The Claim Code ensures that our conduct aligns with the interests of those affected by privacy infringements; it guarantees that CUIC puts the interests of the collectively disadvantaged first.

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Privacy is a fundamental right

Privacy is a fundamental human right, as is data protection. The General Data Protection Regulation or “GDPR” is European Union regulation that protects the data of individuals. With the GDPR in force, we entered into a new era of protection in the digital world. Unfortunately, many organizations are yet to grasp this regulation and still do not operate according to these core privacy values.

The Claim Code

CUIC Foundation complies with the requirements of Article 3:305a of the Civil Code, in addition, the foundation also complies with all the requirements of the 2019 Claim Code.

The Claim Code is a governance code for foundations and associations that can bring collective actions or negotiate collective settlement agreements. The Claim Code consists of seven comply or explain principles that deal with the governance of the claim vehicles and third party funding. The Claim Code puts the interests of the collectively disadvantaged first.

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The board

Wilmar Hendriks

Wilmar Hendriks is chairman of CUIC. He has been a privacy manager and consultant since 2002. In 2018, he founded ControlPrivacy, a platform for experienced privacy experts. Among other things, Wilmar is a board member of the Privacy First Foundation and jury chairman of the Dutch Privacy Awards. Previously, he was responsible for privacy in the Social Domain within the Municipality of Amsterdam, for some 15 years. Wilmar is a board member nominated by the Dutch organization Privacy First.

Matthijs Visser

Matthijs Visser is CUIC's treasurer. He is also managing partner and founder of Special Purpose Projects, an organization that focuses on making the planet more sustainable by participating in and developing companies with a mission in food, water, and agriculture. Matthijs helps entrepreneurs enter into commercial collaborations and partnerships, and supervises mergers and acquisitions. Previously, he worked for Alliander and Nuon. He holds an MBA from Erasmus University and followed courses at the London Business School. Matthijs is a board member nominated by the European privacy rights organization NOYB.

Hilde Laffeber-Nicolaï

Hilde Laffeber-Nicolaï is a brand and communications expert. As a journalist, she worked among others for broadcaster PowNed, De Wereld Draait Door, and Knevel en Van den Brink. Before that, she worked as a policy officer and diplomat at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. In recent years, she was director of Brand and Communications at Aegon Netherlands. Hilde has been involved in social initiatives since she was a teenager, including civil rights organization Kompass and the Landelijk Aktie Komitee Scholieren (LAKS).

Eliëtte Vaal

Eliëtte Vaal is a founding partner at The Data Lawyers, a law firm specialized in IT and data protection law. Eliëtte is an experienced lawyer and litigator in cases concerning IT, privacy, and freedom of expression. She also advises national and international clients on complex privacy matters. Eliëtte is a frequent speaker at conferences and seminars and publishes in Dutch journals on internet and computer law. She is chairman of the privacy commission at Nivel and a member of the International Association of Privacy Professionals. Eliëtte was nominated as CUIC board member by Privacy First.

Koen Rutten

Koen Rutten is a lawyer and partner at the firm Finch. He specialises in, inter alia, liability litigation and corporate governance. Koen has specific experience in 'class actions' (collective lawsuits). He has successfully represented the interests of investors and other victims on several occasions. He did so, inter alia, as representative of the interests of a large group of Ageas (formerly Fortis) shareholders in proceedings before the Amsterdam Court of Appeal. These proceedings resulted in the declaration of the largest ever settlement under the Collective Mass Claims Settlement Act in the Netherlands, of €1.3 billion. Koen is also involved in takeover disputes, inquiry proceedings and (international) arbitrations, and litigates & advises on the liability of financial institutions and regulators.

Supervisory Board

Kees Verhoeven

Kees Verhoeven is chairman of CUIC's Supervisory Board. He is a Dutchman and founder of Bureau Digitale Zaken. Since August 2021, he has been adviser Digital Transformation at the DDA and the FCA, trade associations for data centers and digital connectivity. From 2010-2021, Kees was a member of the Dutch national parliament. In that role, he championed digitalization, privacy, and cyber security. In addition, he was vice-chairman of the parliamentary committee on the digital future. Kees studied economic geography and worked for MKB-Nederland.

Anne-Christine Lacoste

Anne-Christine Lacoste is an independent consultant with twenty years of experience in privacy and data protection. She holds French nationality. She supports companies and organizations in their efforts to comply with the GDPR, for example by drafting data protection impact assessments, privacy and cookie management policies. Previously, Anne-Christine gained experience as head of the international cooperation sector at the European Data Protection Supervisor, and head of the legal service at the Belgian Data Protection Authority. Anne Christine is supervisory board member on the recommendation of the European privacy organization noyb.

Maarten van Luyn

Maarten van Luyn is an experienced independent consultant in the field of specialized investments and legal project management. As investment consultant he is frequently engaged by (and previously was the EMEA Director of) the collective redress practice at Omni Bridgeway, a global organization specializing in litigation funding and legal risk management. Maarten is a certified business mediator and interim (non-) executive director (also on assignment by the Enterprise Chamber of the Amsterdam Court of Appeal). Maarten has worked as director & general counsel of Aegon Netherlands and partner in the Amsterdam office of international law firm Baker & McKenzie. Maarten holds several titles, including a Master in Corporate Law and Master in Civil Law from Leiden University and an Executive MBA from Rotterdam School of Management.