- The European Union wants to enhance the power of national privacy regulators in policing a new EU-U.S. data pact to replace Safe Harbour.
- Safe Harbour was declared invalid by the European Court of Justice in October on concerns about mass U.S. surveillance.
- The EU has committed to wrapping up the talks by the end of January, but that deadline may have to be extended if an agreement cannot be reached soon.
The EU Commission wants to involve European privacy watchdogs more deeply in the new agreement. Sources said a bigger role for European watchdogs would allow citizens to complain directly to their national authorities if they felt their privacy had been breached, Reuters reported. The old Safe Harbour included a similar provision for human resources data.
Currently, there is no agreement in the new provision, and “differences remain over how the European regulators would cooperate with the FTC to avoid giving the EU extraterritorial powers.”
The previous Safe Harbour system allowed companies to self-certify that they complied with EU privacy law.