Sometimes sharing isn’t caring.
Europe and the U.S. have set a deadline to reach a data-sharing agreement by Jan. 31, 2016. This comes after the European Court of Justice ruled that the current arrangement was invalid and didn’t protect European citizens’ information.
Europe passed a data protection directive in 1995 that was strict on companies and assumed more rights to the consumer. The U.S., on the other hand, has been more of a free for all.
The issue is that European citizen data could be “parked” in U.S. information providers, says Zittrain, which could give the U.S. Government the right to access the data. And after former National Security Agency contractor, Edward Snowden, leaked information in 2013 about U.S. Government’s surveillance methods, Europe began to distrust the U.S. Government and the tech industry.
If the two nations can’t reach an agreement, Europe has threatened to impose penalties against U.S. companies for “illegal data transfers.”
However, tech companies might have little to worry about.
“My guess is that this will be resolved,” said Zittrain. “I can’t imagine that we’re going to see U.S. companies stand up physical servers and really keep an eye on who’s a citizen of where.”
Additional production by Levi Sharpe.