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Eversheds Comment: Political agreement has been reached in relation to the new EU-US Privacy Shield

  • Ireland
  • General

03-02-2016

Commenting on news that the European Commission and United States have reached political agreement on a new framework for transatlantic data flows, Marie McGinley, Head of Intellectual Property, Technology and Data Protection in Eversheds Ireland, says:

"Political agreement has been reached in relation to the new EU-US Privacy Shield (i.e. Safe Harbour 2.0). The EU Commission last night released a statement confirming that a new framework for transatlantic data flows has been agreed. While political agreement has been reached, it would appear that further work is required to finalise the detail. Both Vice-President Ansip and Commissioner Jourová have been tasked with preparing the necessary steps to put in place this new EU-US Privacy Shield. We await the finalised detail in relation to this new arrangement. We will continue to monitor this closely."

“While it has been promised that the new EU-US Privacy Shield will provide for strong obligations on companies handling Europeans’ personal data, robust enforcement mechanisms, clear safeguards and transparency obligations on the U.S. government and effective protection of EU citizens' rights with several redress possibilities, the ultimate test will be in the detail. The key for both the EU Commission and the US is to ensure that this new EU-US Privacy Shield is robust enough to fulfil the requirements of the CJEU.”

“This announcement will undoubtedly raise a lot of questions about what to do about transfers in the interim. A lot of companies have invested heavily in adopting alternatives and so they will need some convincing about the workability and shelf life of the “EU-US Privacy Shield” to move to the new mechanism.  As well as a better indication of when they might be able to evaluate and adopt it.”

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