Although it has been almost five months now since the United States-European Union Safe Harbor program was held invalid by a European Court, no clear solution is in immediate sight. Although a new “Privacy Shield” program was announced, whether the provisions as currently “agreed” will survive European ratification remains to be seen.

Nonetheless, it is important for U.S.-organizations to keep the recent changes in data privacy law in the EU in mind, as they plan their organizational data practices. As one of the U.S.’ largest trade partners, the European data protection laws are likely to push U.S. laws in a similar direction, especially as EU members push for more from the U.S. on the Privacy Shield program.

Countries in Asia, particularly members of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), have also continued to push for broader inter-operability rules. Multi-national corporations based in the U.S. should also closely watch such developments, to make sure that their protocols for trans-Pacific and trans-Atlantic data transfers will be forward-compatible.

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