New EU-US data transfer arrangement

The European Commission and the US have reached political agreement on a new framework for transatlantic data flows: the EU-US Privacy Shield.

The Commission says that the new arrangement will place stronger obligations on US companies handling EU citizens’ personal data and includes robust enforcement measures, including increased cooperation with European Data Protection Authorities (DPAs). It will also contain limitations, safeguards and oversight mechanisms on US government agencies’ access to EU citizens’ personal data and the US has ruled out indiscriminate mass surveillance.

The European Commission says that the new arrangement reflects the requirements set out by the European Court of Justice in its ruling on 6 October 2015, which declared the old Safe Harbour framework invalid because US government surveillance threatens EU citizens’ privacy and they have no judicial redress.

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