The inevitable has happened. In light of the issues highlighted by the European Court in its Schrems v. Facebook ruling in October last year (explained in our blog), the Irish Data Protection Commissioner has reportedly referred the use of the European Commission's (EC) model clauses to the European Court of Justice (ECJ) for a determination as to whether they stand up to scrutiny.
Previously, large multinationals had their US entity sign up 'Safe Harbor'. This agreement seemed to worked until the ECJ ruled that it did not: following the Snowden revelations, it became evident that the formerly unknown National Security Agency (NSA) could access all personal data in the US. This meant that even if a company signed up to Safe Harbor, it could not guarantee the European Data Controller or the data subject that their data was given adequate protection.
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