Cross-Border Data Flow

On January 15, 2019, the UK House of Commons rejected the draft Brexit Withdrawal Agreement negotiated between the UK Prime Minister and the EU by a margin of 432-202. While the magnitude of the loss sets in motion a process which could potentially have resulted in an early general election being held, on January 16 a majority of British Members of Parliament rejected a vote of no confidence in Theresa May’s government.

Continue Reading UK House of Commons Rejects Draft Brexit Withdrawal Agreement

On December 21, 2018, the Irish Data Protection Commission (the “DPC”) published preliminary guidance on data transfers to and from the UK in the event of a “no deal” Brexit (the “Guidance”). The Guidance is relevant for any Irish entities that transfer personal data to the UK, including Northern Ireland.

Continue Reading Irish DPC Issues Preliminary Guidance on Data Transfers in the Event of a “No Deal” Brexit

On December 20, 2018, the Department of Commerce updated its frequently asked questions (“FAQs”) on the EU-U.S. and Swiss-U.S. Privacy Shield Frameworks (collectively, the “Privacy Shield”) to clarify the effect of the UK’s planned withdrawal from the EU on March 29, 2019. The FAQs provide information on the steps Privacy Shield participants must take to receive personal data from the UK in reliance on the Privacy Shield after Brexit.

Continue Reading Department of Commerce Updates Privacy Shield FAQs to Clarify Applicability to UK Personal Data

On November 23, 2018, both Australia and Chinese Taipei joined the APEC Cross-Border Privacy Rules (“CBPR”) system. The system is a regional multilateral cross-border transfer mechanism and an enforceable privacy code of conduct and certification developed for businesses by the 21 APEC member economies.

Continue Reading Australia and Chinese Taipei Join the APEC CBPR System

The Agency of Access to Public Information (Agencia de Acceso a la Información Pública) (“AAIP”) has approved a set of guidelines for binding corporate rules (“BCRs”), a mechanism that multinational companies may use in cross-border data transfers to affiliates in countries with inadequate data protection regimes under the AAIP.

Continue Reading Argentina DPA Issues Guidelines on Binding Corporate Rules

On November 23, 2018, the European Data Protection Board (“EDPB”) published its long-awaited draft guidelines on the extraterritorial application of the EU General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”) (the “Guidelines”). To date, there has been a degree of uncertainty for organizations regarding the scope of the GDPR’s application outside of the EU. While the Guidelines provide some clarity on this issue, questions will remain for non-EU controllers and processors. Importantly, these Guidelines are only in draft form and are open for consultation until January 18, 2019, which will give organizations an opportunity to provide comments and raise additional questions in an effort to obtain further clarification from the EDPB on these important scoping questions.

Continue Reading EDPB Publishes Guidelines on Extraterritorial Application of the GDPR

On October 19, 2018, European Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality Věra Jourová and U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross issued a joint statement regarding the second annual review of the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield framework, taking place in Brussels beginning October 18. The statement highlights the following: Continue Reading EU and U.S. Regulators Issue Joint Statement on the Status of the Second Annual EU-U.S. Privacy Shield Review

On September 30, 2018, the U.S., Mexico and Canada announced a new trade agreement (the “USMCA”) aimed at replacing the North American Free Trade Agreement. Notably, the USMCA’s chapter on digital trade recognizes “the economic and social benefits of protecting the personal information of users of digital trade” and will require the U.S., Canada and Mexico (the “Parties”) to each “adopt or maintain a legal framework that provides for the protection of the personal information of the users[.]” The frameworks should include key principles such as: limitations on collection, choice, data quality, purpose specification, use limitation, security safeguards, transparency, individual participation and accountability. Continue Reading APEC Cross-Border Privacy Rules Enshrined in U.S.-Mexico-Canada Trade Agreement

On September 27, 2018, the Federal Trade Commission announced a settlement agreement with four companies – IDmission, LLC, (“IDmission”) mResource LLC (doing business as Loop Works, LLC) (“mResource”), SmartStart Employment Screening, Inc. (“SmartStart”), and VenPath, Inc. (“VenPath”) – over allegations that each company had falsely claimed to have valid certifications under the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield framework. The FTC alleged that SmartStart, VenPath and mResource continued to post statements on their websites about their participation in the Privacy Shield after allowing their certifications to lapse. IDmission had applied for a Privacy Shield certification but never completed the necessary steps to be certified. Continue Reading Four Companies Settle FTC Allegations Regarding False EU-U.S. Privacy Shield Certifications