European companies should stop sending data to the US, German privacy officials say

The exchange should stop because of NSA spying, privacy advocates said

By Loek Essers, IDG News Service |  Legal

"I can advise that we do not consider that there are grounds for an investigation under the Irish Data Protection Acts given that 'Safe Harbor' requirements have been met and on that basis we cannot identify that a contravention of the Acts has taken place," she added in a follow-up email to the group on Wednesday.

"The Germans see a major breach of fundamental rights, while the Irish do not even see a reason for an investigation," said Max Schrems, a spokesman for Europe-v-Facebook. "We are very confident that the decision in Germany will be more substantial and very different than in Ireland."

On Thursday, a broad coalition of mainly German civil rights organizations published a list of 12 demands directed at policy makers in reaction to the NSA surveillance program.

The open letter was signed by groups including the German digital rights group Digitale Gesellschaft, Greenpeace Germany, the German Journalist Association, the Electronic Frontier Foundation and the Chaos Computer Club. 

The groups called on governments, national parliaments and European institutions for a consistent implementation and defense of the fundamental rights to privacy and data protection. They also want an obligation to individually notify affected persons after every act of digital surveillance or inspection and called for the disclosure of every agreement, law and action that has an adverse effect on the right to informational self determination.

Loek is Amsterdam Correspondent and covers online privacy, intellectual property, open-source and online payment issues for the IDG News Service. Follow him on Twitter at @loekessers or email tips and comments to loek_essers@idg.com

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