FB pixel

A US-EU data privacy order signed in Washington. It’s the EU’s turn now

A US-EU data privacy order signed in Washington. It’s the EU’s turn now
 

Call it mending fences or acknowledging political reality, the United States last week budged on its desire for less-fettered access to the private data of people in the European Union.

President Joe Biden signed an executive order agreeing to new rules for the interception of the private information of EU citizens by U.S. spy agencies. A summary of the order can be found here.

It is no small consideration that the data involved is biometric, including face scans. The same is true with the conflicting politics of the effort to protect – or not – cross-Atlantic personal data.

European political leaders and courts rejected a previous data-transfer agreement as inadequate for their citizens. They have for years wanted equal treatment of an individual’s private data in the face of the United States’ intelligence community’s ravenous appetite for digital information.

The proposed framework must still be reviewed by multiple EU agencies, including a final decision by the European Commission. That could happen next year, according to reporting by tech-business publication TechCrunch. An agreement in principle was announced in March.

It will not have gone unnoticed on either side of the Atlantic that presidential executive orders can be like the curtains in the Oval Office – they can be removed with ease by the next occupant of the White House.

The EU two years ago unilaterally revoked the previous data-transfer agreement, with the United States referred to as the Privacy Shield. It was struck down by the so-called Schrems II decision rendered by the EU’s Court of Justice.

That decision and a previous one, Schrems I, were reactions to the 2013 illegal public distribution of state and private secrets by Edward Snowden.

Pam Dixon, executive director of the World Privacy Forum and a noted biometrics expert, has broken down the order’s guidelines and highly bureaucratic processes in an analysis of the situation.

A list of legitimate eavesdropping objectives will become the standard against which any individual missive will be measured in the agreement.

If the surveillance is deemed illegitimate, as judged by U.S. officials, including a civil liberties protection officer in the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, the surveillance can be ordered halted. People can be fired, writes Dixon, if they do not act in the interests of the order.

Article Topics

 |   |   |   |   |   |   |   |   | 

Latest Biometrics News

 

Biometric ID cards remain foundational, but don’t count out fingerprint smart cards

Biometric national ID cards top the most-read news of the week on Biometric Update, between a contract in Cameroon for…

 

DHS and TSA adjust digital strategies with biometrics, facial recognition

U.S. government agencies are adapting in real time to a digital landscape transformed by AI, identity fraud, deepfakes and biometric…

 

Finger vein biometrics from Global ID deployed in Namibia’s fight against HIV

A new application of Global ID’s finger vein biometrics to help reduce HIV Infections among vulnerable young people is launching…

 

Bill allowing biometric age verification for booze sales moves to Missouri Senate

The Maryville Forum reports that Missouri retailers could soon perform age verification using biometric methods such as facial recognition or…

 

Victorians sign up for mobile driving licenses in droves but let down at the pub

Victoria reports 200,000 people signing up for mobile driving licenses (mDLs) within the first 48 hours of their introduction this…

 

Retail biometrics queues up from shopping malls to quick serve restaurants

Despite skepticism among American consumers, biometric payments in retail are about to have a moment, according to some experts. These…

Comments

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Most Read This Week

Featured Company

Biometrics Insight, Opinion

Digital ID In-Depth

Biometrics White Papers

Biometrics Events