Commercial sector: EU-US Privacy Shield

The adequacy decision on the EU-US Privacy Shield was adopted on 12 July 2016 and the Privacy Shield framework became operational on 1 August 2016. This framework protects the fundamental rights of anyone in the EU whose personal data is transferred to the United States for commercial purposes. It allows the free transfer of data to companies that are certified in the US under the Privacy Shield.

The Framework includes:

  • strong data protection obligations on companies receiving personal data from the EU
  • safeguards on US government access to data
  • effective protection and redress for individuals
  • an annual joint review by EU and US to monitor the correct application of the arrangement.

Privacy Shield annual reviews

The European Commission reviews the arrangement on an annual basis to assess its continued level of adequacy for the protection of personal data.

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Law enforcement cooperation: EU-US Umbrella Agreement

The EU-US Data Protection Umbrella Agreement concluded in December 2016 introduced  high privacy safeguards for transatlantic law enforcement cooperation. It contains a comprehensive set of data protection rules that apply to all transatlantic exchanges between criminal law enforcement authorities. In this way, it also strengthens law enforcement cooperation by facilitating the exchange of information. It therefore meets the two-fold objective of working with our U.S. partners to combat serious crime and terrorism while advancing the level of protection of Europeans in line with their fundamental rights and the EU data protection rules.

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