- Title: EU data transfer tools are legal, says EU court adviser in Facebook privacy case
- Date: 19th December 2019
- Summary: NEW YORK, NEW YORK, UNITED STATES (FILE) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF FACEBOOK WEBSITE ON LAPTOP
- Embargoed: 2nd January 2020 12:55
- Keywords: Court of Justice of the European Union ECJ EU Facebook Luxembourg Max Schrems data transfer personal data right to privacy social network
- Location: LUXEMBOURG, LUXEMBOURG / MENLO PARK, CALIFORNIA AND NEW YORK, NEW YORK, UNITED STATES / VIENNA, AUSTRIA
- City: LUXEMBOURG, LUXEMBOURG / MENLO PARK, CALIFORNIA AND NEW YORK, NEW YORK, UNITED STATES / VIENNA, AUSTRIA
- Country: Luxembourg
- Topics: Crime/Law/Justice,Judicial Process/Court Cases/Court Decisions
- Reuters ID: LVA004BAN6YPZ
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Tools used by hundreds of thousands of companies to transfer data abroad are legal as they offer sufficient privacy protection, an adviser to Europe's top court said on Thursday (December 19), marking a win for Facebook in its seven-year dispute with Austrian privacy activist Max Schrems.
Facebook found itself in the spotlight after Schrems challenged its use of standard contractual clauses on the grounds that they do not offer sufficient data protection safeguards.
Schrems had also called on Ireland, where Facebook has its European headquarters, to act against the company because it is subjected to U.S. surveillance laws, which he believes could threaten Europeans' rights.
The advocate general at the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU), said in a non-binding opinion that the clauses used by many companies to underpin activities such as outsourced services, cloud infrastructure, data hosting and finance are legal.
However, he added privacy regulators must prohibit such data transfer when there is a conflict between obligations related to standard clauses and those imposed by the law of the third country of destination.
Schrems had argued that Facebook's use of these clauses do not offer sufficient data protection safeguards. The court, which follows such recommendations in four out of five cases, will rule in the coming months.
(Production: Clement Rossignol, Bart Biesemans, Matteo Witt)
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