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Facebook is at risk of blocking data transfers from Europe to the US

The Irish Data Protection Authority has decided Prevents the transfer of user data from the EU to the US By Metaparent company Facebook. That’s one thing for now Preliminary decision and does not cover anything Instant block. The draft ruling has been sent to other European privacy authorities where it will remain with them A month to approve itAccording to Article 60 European Data Protection Regulation (Gdpr).

We may have reached one of the final chapters in the legal battle between Meta and the European authorities over the protection of personal data that began nearly 9 years ago, thanks to the action of a then-law student. Max SchremsFor the first time an activist for the protection of personal data brought up the question of data transfer Facebook users in the US, before European privacy guarantees.

His actions led to two sentences, named after his surname Schrems I And Schrems II, European officials tried to solve the problem. The first sentence led both sides of the Atlantic to enter into an agreement Privacy PolicyHowever, it was repealed with the second sentence because it still did not provide sufficient guarantees to European citizens to ensure their rights.

In 2020 So the European Court of Justice has struck down the Privacy Shield, Completely repeals the ability of US companies to transfer European user data to the US, due to poor safeguards guaranteed by the government in using this data. Since then, Mark Zuckerberg’s company has been warned several times to stop the data flow, but thereInaction by the Irish privacy watchdogWhere Facebook has its registered office in the European Union, it has allowed the company to continue data transfers.

However, this is not an immediate stop, because precisely, the authorities of the various Member States will have a period of one month to comment on the preliminary decision of the Irish supervisor. In addition, European data protection authorities have repeatedly objected to their key decisions in Ireland, and if it happens again, The final decision must be taken by referendumBased on the provisions of Article 65 of the GDPR.

Will the new privacy alliance between Europe and the US solve old problems?

Brussels and Washington are launching a framework agreement for data exchange between the two sides of the Atlantic, which was blocked by a ruling in 2020. But there are some practical and legal aspects to consider

Comment

According to Schrems The Irish Supervisor’s decision can be overruled by other authorities, after all, it leaves out some important issues in the matter. Among these, the draft It did not specify whether the decision would be retroactive Or it will only affect future data transfers Or will a penalty be levied against the meta for misconduct in recent years.

Also, again according to the activist, Facebook will try to delay any effective data transfer ban. “Ireland should send the police Physically cut the cables, before these transfers actually stopped. It would be easy and effective to fine Metta for last years transfers, but with the behavior of the Irish official, It seems that the guarantor wants to pursue this case aimlessly“, Schrems said.

Further, Meta has repeatedly threatened to end all of its services in Europe, if authorities want to block all data transfers without consent. A warning that alarmed much of the European business sector. The European Union and the United States stand by Negotiate a new text in data exchange, allowing companies like Meta to continue sending data across the Atlantic regardless of the Irish mandate. In March, Brussels and Washington caught on A preliminary agreement at the political levelBut an agreement is unlikely to be reached before the end of the year.

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