European Commission and US Congress must urgently reach a new international agreement on transatlantic data flows, says Applications Developers Alliance

European Commission and US Congress must urgently reach a new international agreement on transatlantic data flows, says Applications Developers Alliance

November 6, 2015

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Catriona Meehan
Catriona@AppAlliance.org

Responding to the European Commission guidance today (Friday, 6 November 2015) which provided advice for businesses that can no longer use the safe harbour arrangement for exporting EU citizens’ data to the US following a court decision, Application Developers Alliance EU Policy Director, Catriona Meehan, said:

"We welcome the European Commission’s guidance on alternative mechanisms for transfers of personal data. Small businesses and startups desperately needed more legal certainty to continue to operate in compliance with EU law, as they are in a particularly vulnerable position following the CJEU's invalidation of the Safe Harbour agreement." 

"The Commission's guidance is a step forward yet it does not fully replace Safe Harbour. The Commission and US Congress have been in talks since 2013 and we strongly urge them to swiftly reach a new international agreement, as thousands of small businesses depend on transatlantic data flows."

NOTES TO EDITORS: 

  • 60% of Safe Harbour participants were SMEs
  • The Commission’s guidance reiterates that safe harbour is no longer valid, and that standard contractual clauses (between EU data exporters and US importers) and binding contract rules (for intra-group transfers) are still viable.
  • In some cases, exceptions set out in the data protection directive can be used, such as for transfers based on explicit consent, or for carrying out a contract.

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