US, EU reach preliminary agreement on data sharing

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen listens as President Biden speaks about the Russian invasion of Ukraine in Brussels
Associated Press/Evan Vucci

Leaders in the United States and Europe announced Friday that they have reached an ”agreement in principle” over rules for the transfer of personal data across the Atlantic.

The previous agreement had been struck down in 2020 by a European court that determined it did not protect Europeans from American surveillance operations.

“The new Framework marks an unprecedented commitment on the U.S. side to implement reforms that will strengthen the privacy and civil liberties protections applicable to U.S. signals intelligence activities,” the White House said in a statement Friday.

“This is another step in strengthening our partnership,” tweeted European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen.

Businesses from both sides of the Atlantic have been pushing hard for a new agreement to be reached and praised the preliminary deal.

“With concern growing about the global internet fragmenting, this agreement will help keep people connected and services running,” said Nick Clegg, the president of global affairs at Meta. “It will provide invaluable certainty for American & European companies of all sizes, including Meta, who rely on transferring data quickly and safely.”

The new deal may not be enough to win over privacy advocates, especially with details not yet available.

Max Schrems, who led the challenge that invalidated the last data transfer agreement, said in a statement that if the deal “is not in line with EU law, we or another group will likely challenge it.”

Tags data sharing data transfers Digital rights Internet privacy Nick Clegg Privacy Privacy law Ursula von der Leyen

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