Background

The EU Data Protection Directive 95/46/EC (the “Directive”) creates the legal framework for national data-protection laws in each EU Member State.  The Directive states that personal data may only be transferred to countries outside the EU when an “adequate” level of protection is guaranteed.  Few exemptions apply, and the laws of the United States are not considered by the European Union as providing an adequate level of data protection.  As a result, if a company intended to transfer personal data from the EU to the U.S., it traditionally had to achieve the Directive’s required “adequacy” status through: Safe Harbor certification; standard contractual clauses; or binding corporate rules….

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