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Continental Privacy Divide May Be Widening

PRIVACY LAW—EU & U.S.

February 4, 2013

The New York Times reports on what may be a widening “data-control divide” between the EU and the U.S. “The sum of the parts of U.S. privacy protection is equal to or greater than the single whole of Europe,” said the U.S. Commerce Department’s Cameron Kerry. European Data Protection Supervisor Peter Hustinx said, “Yes, we share the basic idea of privacy. But there is a huge deficit on the U.S. side.” In a Q&A, European Commission Vice President Viviane Reding said the White House's Privacy Bill of Rights “shows that we have much in common. Convergence is springing up and synergies are possible.” And a Times op-ed supports “federal legislation backed by regulatory enforcement” in the U.S. Meanwhile, a group of U.S.-based advocacy groups has written to top U.S. politicians seeking assurances that U.S. policymakers in Europe will “advance the aim of privacy,” and Financial Times reports that Article 29 Working Party Chair Jacob Kohnstamm said that EU lawmakers are “fed up” with lobbying efforts from U.S. tech firms. (Registration may be required to access this story.)
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