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CCIA Hails Passage of Judicial Redress Act

The Computer and Communications Industry Association (CCIA) praised the passage of the Judicial Redress Act in the Senate Judiciary Committee Thursday (Jan. 28).

That bill, which passed the House last October, now goes to the full Senate.

“Today’s vote helps restore transatlantic trust as it extends privacy rights to Europeans and enables better law enforcement cooperation," said CCIA president Ed Black. "It will also support finalization of a new Safe Harbor framework that thousands of U.S. and EU companies use to transfer data.”

The bill gives the citizens of some of the U.S.' allies access to records about them that have been collected by the U.S. government, as well as the ability to amend those records and, importantly, civil redress (the right to file a civil suit) when such records are unlawfully disclosed.

It could help pave the way for the restoration of a privacy safe harbor agreement between the U.S, and the EU that was invalidated by an EU court after it concluded Edward Snowden leaks about U.S. surveillance called into question whether U.S. companies could insure the privacy of information.

The U.S. and EU have been working on updating the safe harbor for the past two years (since the Snowden revelations), but following the court decision was under a deadline of Jan. 31 (now apparently pushed to Feb. 2) to come up with a new framework.

The Software & Information Industry Association added its applause and a call to swift action.

"Enactment of this legislation is key to implementation of the 'umbrella' agreement [safe harbor] on data transfers for law enforcement purposes between the U.S. and E.U., and final agreement on a new commercial data transfer agreement.  SIIA urges the Senate to act expeditiously to pass this important legislation."