Safe Harbour framework does not protect EU personal data stored in the United States and is invalid

Published at 10:21 AM on 06 October 2015

Commenting on the judgement issued by the European Court of Justice on data-sharing between the European Union and United States, Stewart Room, PwC partner and head of PwC Legal's data privacy and protection practice, said: 

"Today's landmark judgment of the EU Court of Justice demonstrates the power of the citizen to cause radical and fundamental change in the European data protection legal framework. This case, brought by an Austrian citizen in protest against the transfer of his personal data to the U.S. builds upon the disclosures of Edward Snowden about mass surveillance by the U.S. intelligence agencies.  The effect of the judgment is that the Safe Harbour Framework, one of the principal mechanisms for the lawful transfer of personal data from Europe to the U.S., does not bind the hands of the national Data Protection Regulators, as is invalid.

"Businesses will now have to revisit their procedures for transferring personal data. There are other mechanisms available, but challenges to those are now highly foreseeable and businesses will need to be aware of the risk of group litigation and compensation claims. 

"The best way for businesses to insulate themselves from additional legal challenges is by carrying out thorough, independent assessments of the quality and robustness of their operational protections for personal data both inside and outside of Europe."

Ends                                                                                    

Notes to editors

About PwC
PwC firms help organisations and individuals create the value they’re looking for. We’re a network of firms in 157 countries with more than 195,000 people who are committed to delivering quality in assurance, tax and advisory services. Find out more and tell us what matters to you by visiting us at www.pwc.com.
 
PwC refers to the PwC network and/or one or more of its member firms, each of which is a separate legal entity. Please see www.pwc.com/structure for further details.
 
©2015 PricewaterhouseCoopers. All rights reserved.


Twitter
LinkedIn
Facebook
Google+

About PwC

At PwC, our purpose is to build trust in society and solve important problems. We’re a network of firms in 157 countries with more than 208,000 people who are committed to delivering quality in assurance, advisory and tax services. Find out more and tell us what matters to you by visiting us at www.pwc.com.

PwC refers to the PwC network and/or one or more of its member firms, each of which is a separate legal entity. Please see www.pwc.com/structure for further details. © 2016 PwC. All rights reserved

« PwC comments on the OECD's Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) reform project | Homepage | UK businesses still failing to take cyber security seriously – PwC report »

  • Contact us
  • +44 (0) 20 7213 1768

Specific and out of hours contacts