On May 12, 2014, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce released a report highlighting the benefits of cross-border data transfers across all sectors of the economy. Hunton & Williams LLP’s Global Privacy and Cybersecurity team developed the report with the Chamber of Commerce. The report, Business Without Borders: The Importance of Cross-Border Data Transfers to Global Prosperity, presents pragmatic solutions for developing international mechanisms that both protect privacy and facilitate cross-border data flows.
The report identifies key concepts critical to ensuring agile cross-border data transfer regimes that will support the global data flows of the future, including:
- Recognition that there are many different approaches to regulating cross-border data transfers, and that differing mechanisms can ensure a similar desired level of data protection.
- Movement away from rigid one-size-fits-all regulations toward more outcome-focused regimes.
- A clear delineation between the issue of government access to data and the distinct issue of cross-border data transfers in a commercial context.
- Assurance that the frameworks we develop today are fit for tomorrow.
- Implementing strong, binding trade agreement commitments that prohibit data localization requirements, support unimpeded data flows, and encourage interoperability among privacy regimes.
“Many of the cross-border data transfer restrictions currently in place were established prior to the digital revolution,” said Lisa Sotto, head of the Global Privacy and Cybersecurity practice at Hunton & Williams LLP. “The laws were not crafted to address the ways in which businesses and consumers use data today. We need to rethink how we approach cross-border data flows so the global economy can continue to thrive now and into the future.”