The conditions for transborder data flows may become more uniform in the EU under the proposed Data Protection Regulation, but restrictions on foreign data transfers are now appearing in new data privacy laws and regulations in several regions of the world, posing global compliance challenges.
Dan Or-Hof, a privacy and technology partner at the Israeli law firm Pearl Cohen Zedek Latzer is reporting that new regulations and orders introduced by Israel's Ministers Committee for Biometric Applications set the ground for a two-year biometric IDs issuance trial period. The Ministry of Home Affairs is making final preparations to start issuing the IDs that will contain encoded fingerprints and facial image, and will be stored in a national database. A campaign led by privacy activists against the controversial biometric database has failed to yield a positive result so far.
Last week, the upper house of Russia's federal legislature approved amendments to the country's federal data protection law. The amendments impose detailed information security requirements on businesses that process personal data and revise some of the statute's data subject consent provisions.The amended law will come into force when it is published in the official newsletter.
The UK Information Commissioner's Office announces new rules for website cookies, which will normally require explicit user consent.
Scott Blackmer provides a "discovery" checklist for global enterprises handling personal data from multiple jurisdictions, as well as advice on a global approach to privacy compliance and risk management.
German state data protection authorities have recently criticized both cloud computing and the EU-US Safe Harbor Framework. From some of the reactions, you would think that both are in imminent danger of a European crackdown. That's not likely, but the comments reflect some concerns with recent trends in outsourcing and transborder data flows that multinationals would be well advised to address in their planning and operations.
Mexico has joined the ranks of more than 50 countries that have enacted omnibus data privacy laws covering the private sector. The new Federal Law on the Protection of Personal Data Held by Private Parties (Ley federal de protección de datos personales en posesión de los particulares) (the "Law") was published on July 5, 2010 and took effect on July 6. IAPP has released an unofficial English translation. The Law will have an impact on the many US-based companies that operate or advertise in Mexico, as well as those that use Spanish-language call centers and other support services located in Mexico.
A new set of EU standard contract clauses ("SCCs" or "model contracts") for processing European personal data abroad came into effect on May 15, 2010. Taken together with a recent opinion by the official EU "Article 29" working group on the concepts of "controller" and "processor" under the EU Data Protection Directive, this development suggests that it is time to review arrangements for business process outsourcing, software as a service (SaaS), cloud computing, and even interaffiliate support services, when they involve storing or processing personal data from Europe in the United States, India, and other common outsourcing locations.
Social networking entails some risks and responsibilities. It may implicate privacy and labor law, confidentiality and nondisclosure agreements, advertising regulations, defamation, and other legal regimes, across borders in a global medium. Users, and their employers, need to be aware of these risks and responsibilities in deciding how to make best use of social media.
It often makes sense to refer to an information security management framework or standard in an outsourcing contract, but this is usually not very meaningful unless the customer also understands what particular security measures the vendor will apply to protect the customer's data.
Security governance is often well established in large organizations, but privacy governance typically lags. It is time for a broader approach to "information governance" that focusses on the kinds of sensitive data handled by the enterprise and establishes policies to assure compliance and effective risk management, as well as better customer, employee, government, and business relations.
This week, I will be providing short updates from the IAPP Global Privacy Summit in Washington, DC. The conference will be in full swing tomorrow, and I will report on various panels and topics of interest. In the meantime, as I prepare to see old and new friends at the Welcome Reception this evening, a few thoughts on what I expect to see and hear a lot over the next few days.
The European Court of Justice rules that Google is not liable for automated keyword advertising based on brand names. Advertisers, however, may be liable under trademark and fair competition laws if the ads misleadingly suggest that they link to the trademark owner.
Notice of significant security breaches involving personal information is recommended under federal Privacy Commissioner guidelines and legally required for custodians of personal health information in Ontario. Albert's new Bill 54, not yet in force, sets a new standard for mandatory notification to the provincial Privacy Commissioner, who can determine whether and how individuals must be notified.
The European Commission has announced a new set of standard contractual clauses to be used in agreements with processors located outside the EU / EEA. The new SCCs represent an effort to better ensure privacy protection when European personal data are passed on to subcontractors in business process outsourcing, cloud computing, and other contexts of successive data sharing.
Service contracts that involve protected personal information should include provisions allocating responsibility for protecting that information and responding to security breaches. Increasingly, this means incorporating specific references to applicable laws and information security standards, and often certifications of conformance.