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Dalton: Call to supend EU-US Privacy Shield is reckless political grandstanding

25 October 2018

Dalton: Call to supend EU-US Privacy Shield is reckless political grandstanding

Citizens and businesses will be left in legal limbo if the European Commission acts on MEPs’ calls to suspend the EU-Privacy shield, warned ECR MEP Dan Dalton today. He was speaking following a vote in the European Parliament today on a resolution that was initially intended to look into on the misuse of Facebook users’ data by Cambridge Analytica.

Citizens and businesses will be left in legal limbo if the European Commission acts on MEPs’ calls to suspend the EU-Privacy shield, warned ECR MEP Dan Dalton today.

He was speaking following a vote in the European Parliament today on a resolution that was initially intended to look into on the misuse of Facebook users’ data by Cambridge Analytica. However, the parliament’s text has been used by some MEPs as an opportunity to score political points and damage our cooperation with the US by calling for the suspension of the Privacy Shield, which has been in place since 2016 and protects citizens’ data when it is transferred to the US for commercial purposes.

Dalton is concerned that unfortunately some MEPs saw this resolution as an opportunity to score political points and damage our cooperation with the U.S, when the positive way forwards would have been to try and learn lessons and to continue dialogue that ultimately ensures the agreement is fully implemented.

Speaking after the vote, Dalton said:

“Authorities must investigate alleged breaches of our data protection laws, as is happening with Facebook in relation to Cambridge Analytica, and prosecute if appropriate.

“We have seen before the consequences of suspending international agreements such as the EU-US Privacy Shield and the uncertainty it causes. Today’s vote was nothing more than political grandstanding from the same people who claim they are guarding the data rights and privacy of European citizens. They should be honest and admit that in the absence of the privacy shield agreement, citizens’ rights to data protection and redress would in reality be seriously diminished. People will be in complete legal limbo.

“Continuing dialogue with the US to ensure the agreement is fully implemented is the only way to move forward. The calls to suspend the Privacty Shield may sound good to some politicians but sending this kind of signal, as has been done today, does not help to build trust or secure long term transatlantic data protection arrangements.”

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