Privacy Shield Concerns Raised at European Parliament Hearing

    Apr 13, 2016

    The European Parliament’s Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs Committee (LIBE) held a hearing on March 17 at which EU lawmakers and privacy officials outlined concerns with the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield as an effective replacement for the U.S. EU Safe Harbor framework.  Witnesses at the hearing included EU and U.S. negotiators, EU data protection authorities, and representatives of private organizations.

    In a statement that was representative of the skepticism raised in questions by members of the committee, David Martin with Bureau Européen des Unions de Consommateurs, a consumer advocacy group, stated that the U.S. legal data protection regime does not provide an ‘essentially equivalent’ level of privacy protection, and the Privacy Shield is an unsatisfactory arrangement that puts in danger the fundamental rights of European consumers.

    In response to a question from a legislator, Isabelle Falque-Pierrotin, the chair of the Article 29 Working Party of EU member state data protection commissioners, indicated that there were apparent data protection gaps in the Privacy Shield. The Article 29 Working Party is expected to complete an assessment of the European Commission’s draft adequacy decision finding in mid-April.

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