Privacy Shield just born already dead

The new move coming form the other side of the Ocean (and yes I mean USA) is aligned with Mr. Trump approach to international agreements.

After Paris climate agreement Donald Trump presidency is shining again in its confrontation with old europe.

The target now is the Privacy Shield Agreement, the agreement that has been reached between USA and EU in order to protect the privacy of EU citizen whose data are collected by USA company.

It should not comes out as a surprise, historically the to side of the ocean have had a deep different approach to personal data protection.

Now accordingly to section 14 of the just signed Trump’s executive order “Executive Order on Public Safety”, USA law enforcement agencies have to explicitly strip out from their privacy policies all non US citizen and Resident.

In other words no protection is assured to the data associated to EU citizen stored in USA datacenters.

Under the Privacy Shield, EU citizens have rights to redress – including judicial redress – for improper disclosure of their data. The Judicial Redress Act (JRA) of 2015, which extended to EU citizens the protections of the Privacy Act of 1974, was critical to European acceptance of the Privacy Shield.

Last month, with a stroke of the pen that could unsettle EU privacy watchdogs, President Trump issued an executive order directing that federal agencies craft their privacy policies to exclude non-US citizens from Privacy Act protections.

This clearly broke the Privacy Shield agreement. For the few of you that remember the story this agreement comes out after the crashing of the previous SafeHarbour agreement.

Safe Harbour was declared ineffective by european supreme court of justice after the Prism activity form USA government was exposed. Now while europe is moving towards GDPR adoption and a strict set of rules in order to protect the privacy of EU citizen and resident, USA has loosen once again the rules exposing, as a matter of fact, EU citizen’s data to risk.

Considering the amount of data (from Facebook to Google, from Microsoft to Apple) that are under this protection act the magnitude of this is enormous, basically this unilateral USA decision put at stake most of the digital economy.

And just to be clear Privacy Shield was not perfect even from an European point of view: in September, an advocacy group known as Digital Rights Ireland asked the second highest European Court to annul the agreement on the grounds that it doesn’t provide enough privacy protection for EU data. Shortly thereafter, a French civil liberties group filed a similar suit. So the new Trump’s administration moves hardly will encounter an easy acceptance in EU.

Now to be fair the impact of the new Executive Order against the Privacy Shield is not clear, someone in Trump administration is suggesting that eventual access to EU citizen data would be not due to mass surveillance and therefore the agreement is not in jeopardy, but considering precedents and the current relationships between USA and EU those sound more like empty words to address the internal USA electoral base (see us EU fault, we’re doing right) than a clear and honest analysis.

Some legal experts, however, have downplayed that concern by pointing out that the order seems to include an exception for Privacy Shield. But given the recent skittishness of European regulators about U.S. surveillance, calls are mounting for the White House to publicly reassure Europeans the order doesn’t affect their data.

We will see what will happen.

For sure the distance between USA and EU have not been bigger, and at the moment (but i am in the EU side) we are in the side for protect our planet from climate change, protect privacy and freedom of citizen from unwanted access.


Dataprotection #EU-U.S. #Privacy Shield  #TrumpPrivacyAct #GDPR


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Privacy Shield just born already dead was originally published on The Puchi Herald Magazine

Why IT companies are so concerned by latest (and future) USA administration moves.

Latest USA administration moves are rising a lot of concerns towards the IT community, and a lot of concerns worldwide.

There are, of course, different sentiments related to political beliefs, ethics and moral considerations that should be considered. I will not enter here in the political, ethical and moral arena to present my personal point of view on the specific subject but I would like make some considerations on the IT sector reactions to what is happening.

It is an easy prediction that the future economic outlook will be impacted by USA administration approach and actions, and this can cause understandable reactions on the various stakeholders.

It is interesting to note the different approach from companies that need a global market to survive, as the technological ones, and the ones that rely on local and few other markets.

This difference is, nowadays, more evident on the IT (SW, HW, Services) sector, a highly technological and advanced area that has 2 important needs:

1) highly qualified and skilled personnel

2) a global market to act on

Setting aside the ethical and moral considerations (which are, don’t get me wrong, imperative to anyone), from a business point of view there is no doubt that some markets (as the technological one) need globalization more than other to prosper and survive.

The IT market, although, cover a critical position here, since it is the engine of the 4th industrial revolution and it is facing, as of now, a growing resistance from the older economical model players; comments and reactions I have seen on various platforms are mostly expression of this growing sentiment.

The IT market needs, market historically leaded by USA companies, has been able to growth thanks mainly to innovation, openness and intercultural exchange.

People working in this sector belongs to different ethnic groups, countries and religions bringing, due to this diversity, high value thanks to their experience and approach. In order to create something new (which is what all the Information technology industry is about) a different approach to things is needed. It is not a case that the IT industry in USA has historically found in the open approach (in terms of market and human resources) a tremendous advantage which brought USA to lead the IT market.

IT CEOs are understandably concerned that the environment that made them prosper now can change dramatically. USA administration announced economic protectionism and other rumored or in place actions (last but not least the improperly so called “muslim” ban) could, as a matter of facts, harms those company’s ability to growth and prosper.

In this view it is totally understandable the concerns of important CEOs towards the present and future actions of USA government and the need to address those concerns openly in public.

If, as rumor says, one of the next moves will be to target H-1B visas (working visas) this will heavily affect those companies that will be forced to rethink their approach to the technological market may be forcing them, as an example, to move R&D facilities to more friendly shores.

The truth behind this is that the need for qualified people in the IT sector is still growing to a rate that there is no single nation, nor even USA, that can provide the resources needed to back up this development; therefore the need for qualified and skilled people coming from virtually anywhere is imperative for this sector.

Like it or not some political issues does affect the economic of some sectors, therefore is absolutely understandable that the technology market reacts toward an approach that can undermine its chance to grow, expand, and ultimately bring value to a country in terms of economic wealth and image.

It is worth to notice also that the IT sector is changing, the technologies are shifting from products to services that need a worldwide market to be remunerative. From Cloud to IoT, passing through security and Big data all the recent technology trends calls for the most open and widest possible market.

But there is another factor to take into account; the consolidated IT technologies that need a limited innovation approach are now offered also by emerging competitors in countries outside USA as china and others.

Even if not ready to provide, in most cases, a disruptive technologies advance those companies are able to produce, in the consolidated technology market, a stable product implementation and constant improvement in a price\competitive fashion. Quality issues in consolidated technology fields are a minor concerns since products tend to be aligned.

If we add the geopolitical issues that lead, as an example, some countries to start looking for alternatives to USA products (China, Russia, Pakistan, India are an example, but understandable the middle east area in the future) the picture is more clear.

This is not politic, but economy.

One further economical consideration, the inevitable shift to a so called “data economy” (the real meaning of the 4th industrial revolution) is something that should be driven. Closing the economy to the old models although make you feel in your “comfort zone” will just retard the inevitable, creating more later costs to adapt.

But there are also ethical and moral consideration to be taken into account, and most of those CEO for once demonstrate that business and ethics can match, probably due not only to their business but also their heritage.

Kudos to Satya Nadella , Brad Smith, Sundar Pichai, Tim Cook, Mark Zuckerberg and the others that put business and ethics as a matter and speak out.


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Why IT companies are so concerned by latest (and future) USA administration moves. was originally published on The Puchi Herald Magazine