Transfer to the USA

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The United States of America have a specific position resulting from the decision of the Commission from 26 June 2000 pursuant to European Parliament and Council Directive 95/46/EC on the adequate level of protection provided by the principles of the Safe Harbour and frequently asked questions issued by the Ministry of Commerce of the United States of America and the decision of the Council 2007/551/CFSP/JHA from 23 July 2007 on the signing, on behalf of the European Union of the Agreement between the European Union and the United States of America on the processing and transfer of data form the passenger's personal file (PNR) by airline operator to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) (PNR Agreement from 2007).

The specific position of the United States lies in the existence of the institute of the Safe Harbour. Safe Harbour brings together controllers and their measures to ensure the protection of personal data are considered by the EU as correspondent to the European law, and therefore adequate.

Following situations may occur in the course of the personal data transfer into the United States of America:

  • The data importer accepted the Safe Harbour principles,
    • There is no need to include standard contractual clauses in the Contract on transfer of   personal data.
  • The data importer has moved to the Safe Harbou r
    • Contract on transfer of personal data shall include standard contractual clauses or other appropriate safeguards of the security of the privacy and fundamental rights and freedoms of individuals.

Airline operators transfer personal data to the US authorities pursuant to legal regime of the country which ensures the adequate level of personal data protection provided that the personal data transfers concerns passenger to the USA. All other cross-border transfers of personal data to the U.S., i.e. transfers not covered by the Safer Harbour and so called PNR Agreement shall be considered as cross-border transfers to a third country which does not ensure an adequate level of protection of personal data.


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