UK’s international data transfer regime still in flux

The DPDI Bill’s approach to international data transfers was challenged by the House of Lords. Laura Linkomies reports on the Grand Committee debate.

The UK government’s new approach to international data transfers is based on creating Data Bridges with third countries, and recognising “alternative transfer mechanisms”. While the government has so far completed only two assessments, namely on Korea and the US, there are concerns over how these data bridges will operate.

At the House of Lords Grand Committee meeting on 15 April, Lord Clement-Jones (Liberal Democrat) spoke about the difficulty in making assessments of third countries’ level of data protection. He queried the government amendment, new Article 45B(2) which “lists conditions that the Secretary of State must consider when deciding whether a third country provides an adequate level of protection for data subjects. It replaces the existing conditions in Article 45(2)(a) to (c) of the UK GDPR, removing important considerations such as the impact of a third country’s laws and practices in relation to national security, defence, public security, criminal law and public authority access to personal data on the level of protection provided to UK data subjects.”

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