Court Decision Opens Door for EU States to Prohibit Data Transfers to the U.S.

international-600On October 6, 2015, the European Court of Justice (ECJ) determined that of the EU-US Safe Harbor Framework was invalid.  The Safe Harbor framework, which facilitated the exchange of personal data between the EU and the US, had become more controversial in Europe in response to growing concerns with regard to U.S. government access to personal information and the lack of judicial redress for Europeans against the US Government. The ECJ’s decision invalidating the Safe Harbor Framework opens the door for every EU Data Protection Authority to determine on its own whether the U.S. provides sufficient protection for personal information, which could create a number of difficulties for European companies and for the European subsidiaries of US. companies.  For more information, including practical implications, please see the linked Morrison & Foerster Client Alerts on October 6, 2015; October 5, 2015; and September 24, 2015.