Human Rights Watch (HRW) and Amnesty International (AI) issued a press release today on a letter and brief the two organizations sent to European Justice and Home Affairs Commissioner Vera Jourova arguing for invalidation of the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield. The letter and brief can be found here.
On substance of the criticism, these groups continue to sell the U.S. surveillance framework short, failing to recognize extensive transparency and safeguards that underlie the U.S. framework. That aside, invalidation on these terms is not appropriate because the European Commission’s reasoned and detailed adequacy decision was based on information about U.S. surveillance practices and laws that the Commission had when the decision was released on July 12, 2016. After reviewing the commitments self-certifying organizations would make under the privacy shield and the enforcement mechanisms available under U.S. law, the Commission said, “the United States ensures an a ...
The EU-U.S. Privacy Shield Framework was negotiated by the U.S. Department of Commerce and European Commission to provide non-European companies with a mechanism to comply with EU data protection requirements when transferring personal data from the EU to the U.S. The agreement is critical to promote continued transatlantic commerce.
The European Parliament’s Pilar del Castillo led a February 17, 2016 breakfast debate on the economic and trade impacts of data flows. The event was organized under the auspices of the European Internet Forum with SIIA serving as the industry lead organizer. The speakers emphasized the following elements in the data flow debate. Data flows matter to what might be considered traditional industrial enterprises as much as they matter to “technology” sector companies. The EU has offensive digital trade goals – the recently concluded EU-U.S. Privacy Shield might make it easier for the Commission to pursue those goals in the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and Trade in Services Agreement (TISA) negotiations. Common cooperative regulatory mechanisms need to be created in order ensure that data flows can continue to underpin global value chains (GVCs). Europe-wide initiatives such as the Single Paymen ...