US-EU data pact comes into force

US-EU data pact comes into force

The US and the European Union brought into effect a data pact which they say will secure all information crossing their borders, according to a report on Reuters.com

The connection features what is being called a “Privacy Shield”, which is supposed to protect personal information about individuals stored by companies’ human resources departments, for example.

The privacy shield will also extend to such things as hotel bookings and other personal transactions.

Reuters reports that the new agreement will make it easier to transfer data without breaking any EU data transfer rules.

A previous attempt by the US to introduce a similar transatlantic data transfer agreement was stopped by the EU, which argued that it gave US agents too much access to Europeans’ data.

Some $250 billion is spent on digital transatlatic trade annually, and companies such as Microsoft, Facebook and Google are examining the new agreement before they consider signing up to it, which is not necessarily a foregone conclusion, according to Reuters.

However, US secretary of commerce Penny Pritzker is confident agreement can be reached. “We are confident the framework will withstand further scrutiny,” she said.