Morrison & Foerster explains ECJ Safe Harbor Opinion’s Implications for all Data Transfers out of Europe

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) followed the core of the Opinion of the Advocate General (AG) (see our Privacy Minute dated October 3, 2015) in Schrems v. Data Protection Commissioner (Case No. C-362/14).

Summary

In sum, the ECJ held that:

  1. Member State Data Protection Authorities (DPA) must be allowed to:
    • examine complaints from individuals regarding the treatment of their personal information by other countries;
    • bring cases to court to question the validity of adequacy decisions; and
    • suspend the transfer of personal information to other countries when they believe it is appropriate.
  2. The Safe Harbor Decision is invalid because:

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