Last month, the French data protection authority (the CNIL) issued initial guidance addressing issues that applications utilizing blockchain technology should consider in order to comply with the European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

As recognized by the CNIL, there are certain natural conflicts between GDPR and blockchain technology. A critical feature of the blockchain is its immutability – the fact that once information is entered into the public ledger regarding a transaction, that information cannot be changed or removed from the ledger. The benefits of providing a transparent and permanent public ledger will have to be reconciled with the data subject rights granted by GDPR, including the right to be forgotten and principles of data minimization. Blockchain applications also raise thorny questions about whether participants in the network are acting as data controllers or processors, subject to the GDPR’s requirements. Additionally, how can a worldwide network of computers involved in data processing activities comply with GDPR requirements related to cross-border data transfers outside of the EU?
Continue Reading French Data Protection Authority Issues Guidance on Interaction of Blockchain Technology with GDPR

Tim Cook, Apple CEO, recently delivered the keynote address for a privacy conference, attended by policy experts and European Union (EU) lawmakers in Brussels, Belgium, where he advocated for new data privacy laws in the United States, similar to the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Cook said that modern technology has led to the creation of a “data-industrial complex” in which personal data is “weaponized against us with military efficiency.” According to Cook, this problem doesn’t just affect individuals, but whole societies.
Continue Reading Apple CEO Calls for Comprehensive US Privacy Laws

On June 28, 2018, the California State Legislature passed, and Governor Jerry Brown signed, the California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018, bringing to the United States many of the rights and compliance obligations currently being applied by the European Union through its General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Effective January 1, 2020, the Act gives California

Last week, the High Court of Ireland submitted eleven questions to the Court of Justice for the European Union (CJEU) to consider about the personal data transfer regime between the European Union (EU) and the United States. This referral stems from a new claim by Max Schrems, an Austrian lawyer and privacy activist. Schrems previously

All privacy professionals, whether in the EU or the U.S., need to have an understanding of the implications of General Data Privacy Regulation (GDPR) compliance, particularly since the fines and penalties that could be imposed for non-compliance are intimidating. GDPR goes into effect on May 25, 2018, and many companies are struggling to become compliant

As we approach calendar year end, traditionally the busiest period of the year for mergers and acquisitions, it is worth revisiting whether our existing competition law framework can and does properly assess the market power of big data.

This spring, The Economist magazine joined the ranks of some antitrust regulators, particularly from the EU, in

In less than 300 days, the European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) will go into effect and forever change the privacy landscape. Leading industry organization, Gartner, Inc., predicts that more than 50 percent of companies affected by the GDPR will not be fully compliant. Of course, the affected companies will include both European and non-European companies. Bart Willemsen, research director at Gartner, says “Threats of hefty fines, as well as the increasingly empowered position of individual data subjects tilt business case for compliance and should cause decision makers to re-evaluate measures to safely process personal data.”

How can organizations prepare for the GDPR? Gartner recommends organizations focus on five high-priority areas:
Continue Reading 5 Focus Areas in Preparation for GDPR Compliance

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) (EU) 2016/679 of 27 April 2016 which comes into force in May 2018, will introduce major changes to the law on the processing of personal data in the European Union. Over the next twelve (12) months, several European Union law firms we work very closely with will join us in providing you with more information on the GDPR. Different themes will be tackled month by month to help you prepare for the GDPR deadline.

Part #2 of this GDPR Series is brought to you by Mills & Reeve, a United Kingdom law firm. Other blog entries in this series will be brought to you by the law firms of Graf von Westphalen (Germany), FIDAL, (France) and VanBenthem & Keulen (Netherlands) as well as Robinson+Cole (United States).

In any major project there is an analysis phase – involving a careful examination of your organization’s current set-up and what needs to be done to deliver the project successfully. Preparing for the GDPR is no exception. Depending on the structures and practices of your organization, compliance could require a significant allocation of resources to ensure that you are ready by the implementation date: 25 May 2018.

So what can be done to get started?

Perhaps the best first step is to conduct a self-assessment audit. This will help organizations map the likely impacts of the changes in data protection law on their activities.

A few key points are worth looking at in detail:
Continue Reading General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Series Part #2: The Importance of Self-Assessment

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) privacy rules required providers such as Comcast Corp. and AT&T Inc. to get subscribers’ permission before collecting and sharing their personal data. On April 4, 2017, President Donald Trump signed a congressional resolution rescinding those rules and sparking major concern both in the U.S. and Europe.

Indeed, according to a