Relief as EU approves UK data adequacy decisions – for now

News from The Law Society

News the European Commission has approved UK data adequacy decisions was today welcomed by the Law Society of England Wales as it heralds the continuation of the free flow of data from the European Economic Area (EEA) to Britain and Northern Ireland.
Law Society president I. Stephanie Boyce said: “Data adequacy recognition from the EU means that personal data can continue to pass from the EEA to the UK without the need to introduce additional safeguards. 

“This decision brings much needed certainty in the regulation of cross-border data transfers between the EEA and the UK. Having urged our members for some months to hope for the best but prepare for the worst on this issue we’re delighted with today’s outcome.”
Had the EU not determined the UK ‘adequate’, transfers of personal data from the EEA to the UK would have required those processing personal data to put in place appropriate safeguards or rely on exemptions provided in data protection law.

The Commission’s decision paves the way for police and judicial cooperation, allowing the continuation of data flows to combat serious crime and terrorism – vital for UK and EEA citizens.

I. Stephanie Boyce added: “Despite this being positive news, we would nevertheless recommend that members regularly review their contingency planning. Though adopted, adequacy decisions are time-limited, subject to review and may even be challenged in the future especially if the UK diverges from EU regulation.”

Thursday, 1st July, 2021