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International

16 July 2020

UK Supreme Court Grants Google Permission to Appeal Class Action Claim in Lloyd vs Google LLC

The Supreme Court has recently granted Google permission to appeal the Court of Appeal’s decision in the case of Lloyd v Google LLC ([2019]) EWCA Civ 1599). The class action brought against Google by Richard Lloyd, the former editor of consumer protection rights group “Which?”, relates to the alleged tracking of personal data by Google of 4.4 million iPhone users and subsequent selling of the users’ data to advertisers, without the users’ knowledge and consent. Google is now appealing the Court of Appeal’s decision granting Mr Lloyd permission to serve his representative action on Google. This landmark case is of particular importance as it has the potential to significantly widen the scope for claims to be brought in respect of a failure to protect data under the GDPR.

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15 July 2020

Partnering With Tech and Fintech Firms: Key EU/UK Regulatory Considerations for the Payments Sector

There has been a rapid increase in collaboration between fintechs and other technology firms and more traditional payment service providers (PSPs) such as banks, merchant acquirers, and money transmitters. While fintechs and technology firms are often seen as direct competitors of traditional PSPs, in a market driven by innovation, both sides of the market increasingly consider collaboration a mutually beneficial way to play to each participating firm’s strengths. For more traditional PSPs, the technologies that a fintech or technology firm develops can help enhance and streamline, and in some cases modernize, the services provided to customers. For a fintech or technology firm, partnering with a PSP can provide an efficient and effective way to expand into the payment services market, particularly for customers who are more inclined to use traditional PSPs.

Regulators are monitoring these developments with growing interest and with an eye to potential risks to customers and markets as well as their ability to supervise regulated firms and their operations. This post highlights a number of EU/UK regulatory issues that fintechs, technology companies, and PSPs should consider when collaborating with one another.

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14 July 2020

Schrems II – Live Reaction to the Key Landmark Decision on the Future of International Data Transfers

Join Us for Post-Decision Coverage of the Schrems II Case

On July 16, the Court of Justice of the European Union will release its much anticipated decision in the Schrems II case, evaluating the validity of key data transfer mechanisms, including Standard Contractual Clauses. The decision could impact the future of international data flows and your business.

We will host an immediate reaction and analysis with leading industry panelists on this landmark decision to understand its impact and what the future may hold.

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10 July 2020

French Council of State Partially Annuls CNIL Cookie Guidelines on Use of Cookie Walls

On June 19, 2020, the French Conseil d’État (“Council of State”) issued a decision partially annulling the Guidelines of the French Data Protection Authority (the “CNIL”) on cookies and other tracking tools (“Guidelines”). The Council of State ruled that the CNIL’s Guidelines could not prohibit the use of ‘cookie walls’, a practice which consists of blocking user access to a website where the user refuses to consent to cookies and other tracking tools. Nevertheless, the Council of State confirms the Guidelines on other key points, such as the requirement to facilitate the right to withdraw consent to cookies, the retention period for cookies and the information requirement for cookies not subject to a consent requirement.

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08 July 2020

Privacy and Cybersecurity Roundtable: Monitor-Side Chat Series

These informal video chats, moderated by Sidley partner Alan Raul, are designed to help fill the COVID-19 induced privacy discussion drought. We look forward to hearing what is on the mind of key data protection and cybersecurity thought leaders from both public and private sectors. Each chat will be relatively brief, leaving some time to address participant questions via our virtual space. Please feel free to suggest any topics you would be interested to hear addressed by contacting dcevents@sidley.com.

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30 June 2020

Key Takeaways From Sidley’s Privacy and Cybersecurity Monitor-Side Chat Featuring Bruno Gencarelli, Head of International Data Flows and Protection at the European Commission

On June 25, 2020, Sidley partner, Alan Raul, founder and co-head of Sidley’s privacy and cybersecurity practice, hosted Bruno Gencarelli, head of International Data Flows and Protection at the European Commission, for a Monitor-Side Chat.

The discussion focused largely on the Commission’s report on two years of the GDPR which was issued on 24 June 2020. Key themes of the report include:

  • EU data protection authorities (“DPAs”) should increase their efforts towards the adoption of a harmonised approach to responding to cross-border investigations;
  • a call for greater resources to be given to DPAs by EU Member States to ensure the GDPR is sufficiently enforced;
  • a need for greater consistency among EU Member States on interpretations of the GDPR in national laws in order to avoid unnecessary burdens on companies; and
  • greater utilisation of the data portability right under the GDPR to ensure individuals have greater involvement in the digital economy by enabling them to switch between different service providers and make use of other innovative services.

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25 June 2020

French Council of State Upholds €50m CNIL Fine against Google

On June 19, 2020, the French Conseil d’État (“Council of State”) issued a decision upholding the €50 Million fine imposed against Google LLC by the French Supervisory Authority (the “CNIL”). On January 21, 2019, the French CNIL had issued a fine against Google’s U.S. headquarters for failure to comply with the EU General Data Protection Regulation’s (“GDPR”) fundamental principles of transparency and legitimacy. Please refer to the relevant Sidley Data Matters’ blog post on the CNIL decision here. The CNIL found that Google had insufficiently informed Android users about their data processing activities, given the complexity of Google’s privacy policy and terms & conditions, and that the consent obtained from them through the use of pre-ticked boxes was insufficient to serve as a legal basis for processing used for targeted advertising. This was the first and highest regulatory fine the CNIL had issued on the basis of the GDPR.

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18 May 2020

European Commission’s Public Consultation on Proposed EU Artificial Intelligence Regulatory Framework

On 19 February 2020, the European Commission published a white paper on the use of artificial intelligence (“AI”) in the EU (the “White Paper”). The White Paper forms part of the Commission President, Ursula Von der Leyen’s, digital strategy, one of the key pillars of her administration’s five year tenure, recognising that the EU has fallen behind the US and China with respect to the strategic deployment of AI. To tackle this problem, the Commission proposes a common EU approach to ‘speed up the uptake’ of AI in the EU, whilst also tackling the human and ethical implications of AI’s fast growing use in the EU, including the possible downsides of its use, such as opaque decision making and hidden, embedded gender and racial discrimination. In order to achieve a common EU approach to AI, and to create “trustworthy” AI that can rival developments in the US and China, the Commission proposes the creation of a regulatory framework for AI.

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21 April 2020

U.S. Warns of Threat to Financial Industry Posed by North Korean Cyberattacks

The U.S. Departments of State, the Treasury and Homeland Security and the Federal Bureau of Investigation issued a joint advisory (the Advisory) on April 15, 2020, discussing the threat to the international community posed by cyberattacks linked to the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea), in particular highlighting concerns for the financial services sector. North Korea has been subjected to comprehensive international sanctions implemented to pressure its government to denuclearize. The U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) has implemented additional unilateral sanctions in response to other North Korean activities, including cyberattacks, human rights violations and money laundering. In addition to broad prohibitions on trade with North Korea, U.S. sanctions bar domestic financial institutions from conducting or facilitating any significant transaction in connection with trade with North Korea or on behalf of any person whose property has been blocked under executive orders imposing sanctions on North Korea. Foreign financial institutions risk secondary sanctions for engaging in the same. (more…)

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03 April 2020

COVID-19: Dealing with Vendors – Privacy and Supply Chain Issues

The COVID-19 global pandemic presents unique legal and practical challenges for businesses across all industries, including with respect to ongoing relationships with vendors and suppliers – whether this relates to information security, privacy compliance, business continuity and contractual issues, such as in relation to force majeure.

In this webinar, we will highlight some of the key issues companies are facing when dealing with supply chain and vendor contracts, and how their concerns can be mitigated.

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