Tag: European Union

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Russian-backed hacking targets Australian businesses
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Was your Facebook data taken by Cambridge Analytica? Here’s how to find out
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SAP criticises impending EU data protection laws
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Agreed changes to EU-US Privacy Shield strengthens data transfer pact
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The EU-US Privacy Shield has been released
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EU and U.S. Agree in Principle on New Trans-Atlantic Data-Transfer Agreement
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European Union Cybersecurity Dashboard Report

Russian-backed hacking targets Australian businesses

By Cameron Abbott, Allison Wallace and Sarah Goegan

Russian hackers are accused of penetrating up to 400 Australian businesses in 2017 as part of an alleged state-sponsored cyber-espionage campaign, targeting millions of computers across the world.

The Australian government made the announcement in light of an extraordinary joint statement from the US and UK governments pointing a stern finger at Russia for sponsoring cyber-attacks on government, private organisations, critical infrastructure providers and internet services providers.

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Was your Facebook data taken by Cambridge Analytica? Here’s how to find out

By Cameron Abbott and Allison Wallace

Over the last few weeks we’ve been blogging about the data “sharing” scandal that has rocked Facebook, and has lead to a boycott of the popular social media site, and sent CEO Mark Zuckerberg to face the music on Capitol Hill.

In case you’d missed the story (which you can read about here, here and here), Facebook estimated 87 million people globally, including 300,000 Australians, had their data shared with Cambridge Analytica, a political consultancy firm used by US President Donald Trump in his 2016 election campaign.

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SAP criticises impending EU data protection laws

By Cameron Abbott and Allison Wallace

SAP has expressed concerns over the implications of the landmark EU data privacy regulations, saying the penalties that will be imposed are too high, and could impede the development of Europe’s start-up culture.

The data privacy regulation will be implemented in May 2018, and includes fines for EU companies up to 4 per cent of their global revenues if they commit a significant breach of data privacy.

In an interview with the Financial Times, SAP’s head of products and innovation, Bernd Leukert said he believes the penalties are too high, and put companies at risk of losing their entire revenue if they commit multiple breaches.

Mr Leukert said he also fears that the EU regulations were not properly aligned with laws in other jurisdictions, such as the US.

Agreed changes to EU-US Privacy Shield strengthens data transfer pact

By Cameron Abbott and Giles Whittaker

The US and the European Union reportedly reached an agreement on the language of a key data transfer pact, including clearer limits on U.S. surveillance and stricter rules for companies holding information of Europeans. The updated EU-US Privacy Shield was sent to EU member states, who are expected to vote on the proposal in July. The revised data transfer pact is said to include stricter cross-border data-handling rules for companies using Europeans’ information for targeted online advertising, and also has detailed the specific condition under which U.S. government intelligence services would collect data in bulk and the safeguards on how the data is used.

Meanwhile, U.S. Chamber of Commerce Executive Vice President and Head of International Affairs Myron Brilliant urged the EU’s member states to quickly sign off on the updated version, saying that the new framework for trans-Atlantic data transfer is critical for companies on both sides of the pond.

Further information regarding the report by Reuters can be read here.

The EU-US Privacy Shield has been released

By Cameron Abbott and Meg Aitken

The European Commission has now officially released the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield, which sets out the key requirements and principles for trans-Atlantic data flow between Europe to the US.

Read our colleague’s article on the announcement here.

Alternatively, access the European Commission’s Press Release here.

EU and U.S. Agree in Principle on New Trans-Atlantic Data-Transfer Agreement

By Cameron Abbott and Melanie Long

On 26 October 2015, European Commissioner Vera Jourová, announced that the European Union had agreed in principle with the US on a new trans-Atlantic data-transfer agreement. Commissioner Jourová made the announcement in a speech, before the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs, which addressed the recent judgment of the European Court of Justice that invalidated the safe harbour scheme between the two countries (Schemes decision). Commissioner Jourvá said, “there is agreement…in principle, but we are still discussing how to ensure that these commitments are binding enough to fully meet the requirements of the Court.” She also added that she expected both sides to make progress on the remaining technical points of discussion by mid-November, when she is scheduled to visit the US. The European Commission is also planning on issuing an explanatory Communication on the consequences of the Schemes decision so that businesses and industry have ‘clear explanations and a uniform interpretation of the ruling.’ The European Commission are also working towards a pending deadline set by European data protection authorities who have said that if, by the end of January 2016, no appropriate solution is found with the U.S. authorities, they will take all necessary and appropriate steps (including enforcement action) to enable data transfers to the U.S. that respect fundamental rights.

The European Commission’s press release can be found here.

European Union Cybersecurity Dashboard Report

by Jim Bulling and Julia Baldi

The Business Software Alliance, European Union cybersecurity dashboard: A path to a Secure European Cyberspace published by the BSA. The report aims to allow government officials in each of the EU Member States with an opportunity to evaluate their country’s policies against these metrics, as well as their European neighbours. The report is an interesting read for Australian companies holding, or considering holding, data in Europe.

See the report here.

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