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International agreements

Open Letter from the OLN to the WP29 and the European Parliament on the Privacy Shield

Paris, 7 April 2016 — The Privacy Shield, a framework for personal data transfers towards US-based companies, is currently under negotiation. This new agreement follows the invalidation of the Safe Harbor by the European Court of Justice (ECJ), who ruled that it did not uphold a substantially equivalent protection for personal data of people protected under European law, and suggested new measures to address it. Since the draft Privacy Shield does not take these measures into account, the resulting agreement is bound to reduce the fundamental rights of Europeans.

Joint communiqué from the Observatoire des Libertés et du Numérique (Freedoms and Digital Observatory)1

Transatlantic coalition of civil society groups: Privacy Shield is not enough, must return to negotiating tables

Paris, 16 March 2016 — Today, more than two dozen civil society groups sent a letter to European leaders reviewing the “Privacy Shield” data-transfer agreement with a singular message: this arrangement is not enough. The Privacy Shield is intended to allow companies to share data about customers across the Atlantic. Unfortunately, the Privacy Shield fails to provide sufficient clarity, oversight, remedy, or protections for the human rights of E.U. citizens against U.S. surveillance practices. The letter specifically calls for legislative reform of U.S. surveillance laws, increased protections for personal data, and additional redress and transparency mechanisms.

Open Letter to Věra Jourová: From Safe Harbor to Privacy Shield, Words in the Wind

Paris, 10 February 2016 — On 6 October 2015, the European Court of Justice (ECJ) invalidated the Safe Harbor, the agreement concluded in 2000 with the USA in order to give a legal framework to data transfers between the European Union and the USA. The WP29, a working group bringing together all Member States' national data protection authorities, waited until the end of January for the European Commission to draft a new agreement taking into account the requirements of the ECJ. This agreement called "Privacy Shield" was announced on 2 February but only contains vague promises.

Oettinger's Hearing: All for the Industry, Nothing for Citizens

Paris, 30 September 2014 — The European Union's “Digital Agenda” should not only be about digits and economy. It is also about rights and freedom. After several hours of hearing of Günther Oettinger, the designated EU Commissioner for the “Digital Economy and Society”, one question remains unanswered: what about the protection of fundamental rights in the digital environment?

The European Commission Wants to Bring Back ACTA Through the Back Door!

Paris, 2 July 2014 — As the current European Commission sees out its last days following the European elections, it has just published an “Action Plan to address infringements of intellectual property rights in the EU” reusing some of the major concepts of the ACTA agreement that was rejected by the European Parliament in 2012 following an important citizen mobilisation. Its contents are also inspired by proposals pushed by France at the European level1, letting fear an increased implication of technical intermediaries in the enforcement of copyright and their progressive transformation into a private copyright police force.

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