The enactment of the USA FREEDOM Act was news unto itself. However, the impact that the surveillance reform legislation may have on cross-border data transfers could turn out to be newsworthy as well. In this post, we summarize some important elements of the legislation and explore the USA FREEDOM Act’s potential to influence more than government surveillance practices.
Two federal appeals courts recently published significant opinions that redefine the scope of government access to phone records, setting the stage for a complex debate in Congress over the future of bulk data collection under the Patriot Act. The pair of decisions, along with the outcome of a legislative debate that has roiled Congress this month, will define the permissible boundaries for government surveillance and contribute to the ongoing debate over government access to digital information in all forms. We summarize both decisions as well as the congressional debate below.
CSO Magazine has published an article authored by Hogan Lovells privacy lawyers Winston Maxwell and Christopher Wolf entitled “Dangerous Assumptions About Clouds,” which debunks common assumptions about ‘local clouds’, the Patriot Act, and (many) governments’ access to data.
The Council of Europe’s 2012 Octopus Cybercrime conference closed today in Strasbourg, France. Hogan Lovells partner Winston Maxwell presented the firm’s white paper on government access to data in the cloud. This blog contains links to the conference materials.
Hogan Lovells has published a White Paper with the results of a study about governmental access to data in the cloud around the world. The White Paper debunks the frequently-expressed assumption that the United States is alone in permitting governmental access to data for law enforcement or national security reasons. The White Paper concludes that businesses are misleading themselves and their customers if they believe that restricting Cloud service providers to one jurisdiction better insulates data from governmental access. It is incorrect to assume that the United States government’s access to data in the Cloud is greater than that of other advanced economies. The White Paper examines the laws of the ten countries, including the United States, with respect to governmental authorities’ ability to access data stored in or transmitted through the Cloud, and documents the similarities and differences among the various legal regimes. The paper was written by Christopher Wolf, co-director of Hogan Lovells’ Privacy and Information Management practice, and Paris Office partner Winston Maxwell. It was released today at a program presented by the Openforum Academy in Brussels at which both Wolf and Maxwell spoke. This blog post links to a copy of the White Paper and summarizes its findings.