BEERG: Status of Post-Brexit Data Transfers Between EU and UK Uncertain

March 17, 2017

The British Secretary of State for Brexit, when asked whether there will be legal uncertainty for data transfers to the EU, responded that he is "not clear." This indicates there is little to no commitment to clarifying the status of data transfers between the UK and the EU after Brexit and suggests the UK will stand in the same uncertain position as the United States regarding data transfers.  Multiple court actions are challenging the "safe harbour" agreements that cover data transfers between the EU and the U.S., casting doubt on the stability a similar agreement between the UK and the EU would enjoy.  According to the most recent BEERG Global Labor Newsletter, "there will be significant problems about data transfers from the EU to the UK post-Brexit... the EU Commission will have to certify the 'adequacy' of the UK’s data protection regime and this is highly unlikely in light of the powers that the UK security services were given by the Investigatory Powers Act 2016."