The UK’s Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has issued its first GDPR notice to Canadian data analytics firm AggregateIQ Data Services Ltd. The company uses personal data to target political advertising at voters prior to elections. The ICO was concerned about the firm’s use of targeted advertising in the UK’s 2016 EU referendum and the 2016 US presidential election, something the ICO is otherwise investigating. In this case, the ICO accused AggregateIQ of failing to follow GDPR by using personal information without a legal basis under GDPR, and using it in ways that people would not have expected when they provided it. Although the data was gathered before GDPR went into effect on May 25, 2018, the ICO stated that GDPR applies due to AggregateIQ’s continued retention and processing of the information about UK residents after that date.
Continue Reading UK’s Data Protection Authority Enforces GDPR

The French data protection authority CNIL has received 3,767 data protection complaints since EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) came into effect on May 25, 2018. According to CNIL this is a 64 percent increase compared to the same four-month period last year. CNIL also reported that it has received 600 data breach notifications during the same period. CNIL is in the process of developing new French regulatory tools under GDPR. It has already developed and proposed strict new biometric privacy regulations, and has nearly finalized a certification program for company Data Protection Officers. It is now developing regulations related to customer relations, human resources, and health monitoring.
Continue Reading Dramatic Increase in French Privacy Complaints Since GDPR

The UK’s data protection authority, the ICO, recently fined marketing firm Everything DM Ltd for sending almost 1.5 million marketing emails without obtaining sufficient consent as required by the UK’s Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations. In particular, the company sent messages on its clients behalf, the messages appeared to the recipient to come from the client, not Everything DM Ltd, yet Everything DM could not establish for the ICO that either it or its clients had obtained consent. Of concern to the ICO was that Everything DM merely “relied on the consent of third parties but didn’t take reasonable steps” to make sure that the appropriate consents were in place.
Continue Reading UK’s ICO Fines Marketing Company Over Unsolicited Emails

Following up on yesterday’s blog about profiling and automated decision making, we now look at guidance on data protection impact assessment (DPIA). The same guidance we discussed also directs companies to conduct a DPIA where profiling or automated decision making results in the “systematic and extensive evaluation” of an individual and decisions are made based on that evaluation that could have legal effects.
Continue Reading Assessing GDPR Guidelines Part II: Data Impact Assessments

The Article 29 Data Protection Working Party recently issued guidelines on how to handle profiling and automated decision making under the General Data Protection Regulation. Under GDPR, “profiling” means the automated collection of personal information in order to evaluate personal aspects about an individual. For example, companies may use profiling to predict individuals’ spending habits, targeting ads to individuals based on their internet browsing history. 
Continue Reading Assessing GDPR Guidelines Part I: Profiling and Automated Decision Making

In the much anticipated first annual review of the EU-US Privacy Shield program, the European Commission concluded that the program continues to provide adequate protection for personal information transferred from Europe to the United States. The Privacy Shield lets EU entities send personal information to participating US companies without running afoul of EU law – law which prohibits the exporting of personal information to entities located in countries whose laws were not deemed “adequate” (except in certain limited circumstances). The US has not been deemed to have “adequate” laws (only a few non-EU countries have been determined adequate, among them Canada, Israel, New Zealand, Switzerland and Uruguay).
Continue Reading EU Concludes Privacy Shield Still Adequate

On February 29, 2016, the European Commission and United States released the terms of the much-anticipated renewed framework for the transfer, sharing, and processing of European individuals’ data to the United States. The framework replaces the “Safe Harbour” mechanism, which enabled U.S. companies to transfer data from the EU to the United States by self-certifying that their practices ensured an adequate level of protection for personal data under the EU Data Protection Directive. In October, the “Safe Harbour” framework was declared invalid by the European Court of Justice in the Schrems decision covered earlier in this blog.
Continue Reading EU-US Privacy Shield: Brace Yourself . . . or Maybe Not