Cynthia O'Donoghue

Cynthia O'Donoghue

Reed Smith

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Latest Posts › EU


In the age of Big Data, the EDPS issues an Opinion on enforcement and upholding fundamental rights

The European Data Protection Supervisor (“EDPS”) issued an Opinion on coherent enforcement of fundamental rights in the age of big data”. This is an update to the EDPS’ Preliminary Opinion in 2014 on “Privacy and...more

10/13/2016 - Big Data Cybersecurity Data Protection Digital Single Market EDPS Enforcement EU Mergers Personal Data Popular

Does Brexit mean Brexit for data protection in the UK?

Three months on from the landmark Brexit vote 23 June, the Information Commissioner’s Office is setting out its position regarding data protection laws in a post-Brexit UK. Elizabeth Denham, the new Information Commissioner,...more

10/5/2016 - Data Protection EU Facebook General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Intellectual Property Protection Member State Referendums UK UK Brexit WhatsApp

The Effect of Brexit on Cyber Security: A National Response to an International Threat?

As the risk of cyber attacks respects no borders, a cohesive and harmonised EU-level approach to cyber security is appropriate. It is therefore understandable that UK organisations have questions following the recent...more

9/2/2016 - Cyber Attacks Cybersecurity Data Protection Acts EU European Commission Member State OFCOM Outsourcing Popular Referendums Treaty of Lisbon UK UK Brexit

ICO Reminds Organisations of EU-U.S. Personal Data Transfer Obligations

The Interim Deputy Commissioner at the Information Commissioner’s Office (“ICO”), Steve Wood, has published a blog reminding organisations of their obligations when transferring personal data to the United States, pursuant to...more

8/25/2016 - Article 29 Working Party (WP29) Binding Contractual Rules Data Protection Acts EU EU-US Privacy Shield ICO International Data Transfers Model Clauses Personal Data U.S. Commerce Department UK Data Protection Act US-EU Safe Harbor Framework

ICO Responds to the ePrivacy Directive Consultation

In April, we reported that the European Commission had opened a public consultation seeking the views of various stakeholders on the current wording of, and possible changes to, the Privacy and Electronic Communications...more

8/15/2016 - Confidential Information Data Breach ePrivacy Directive EU EU Data Protection Laws European Commission General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) ICO Opt-In UK

“Battle-ready” Privacy Shield gets muted welcome from EU data protection authorities

On 26 July, the Article 29 Data Protection Working Party (WP29) released a statement outlining its opinion on the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield, which was adopted by the European Commission earlier this month. After praising the...more

7/28/2016 - Article 29 Working Party (WP29) Binding Corporate Rules Data Controller Data Processors Data Protection Authority EU EU-US Privacy Shield European Commission International Data Transfers Ombudsman Personal Data Surveillance U.S. Commerce Department

European Commission Publishes Communication on Cybersecurity

On 5 July, the European Commission (“EC”) published a communication outlining measures to improve resilience to cyber incidents, improve cooperation and information sharing, and promote innovation and competition in the...more

7/20/2016 - Critical Infrastructure Sectors Cyber Attacks Cybersecurity ENISA EU European Commission Information Sharing Member State NIS Directive

Electronic Signature Regulation Now Effective

Tasked with harmonising the disparate member state legislation that implemented the eSignatures Directive (Directive 1999/93/EC), Regulation (EU) N°910/2014 (the “eIDAS” Regulation) became effective 1 July this year. The...more

7/20/2016 - Authentication Certificate of Authority Digital Signature Standards Digital Single Market E-Signatures EU EU Directive FinTech Mobile Devices Mobile Health Apps Personal Data

Brexit: Baroness Neville-Rolfe on Data Implications

At the beginning of July, Baroness Neville-Rolfe gave a speech at the annual Privacy Laws & Business conference, outlining the government’s stance on the implications of Brexit for a range of data issues including the GDPR,...more

7/18/2016 - Cybersecurity Data Protection EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) ICO International Data Transfers Internet of Things Personal Data Proposed Legislation UK UK Brexit

CJEU Attorney General Opinion Seeks to Restrict the Interpretation of ‘Establishment’

In June, the Attorney General (“AG”) of the Court of Justice of the European Union (“CJEU”) issued his opinion (English translation pending) in the case of Verein für Konsumenteninformation v Amazon EU Sàrl (Case C-191/15)....more

7/15/2016 - Amazon CJEU Data Controller Data Processors EU EU Data Protection Laws Member State Personal Data Principle Place of Business

EU-U.S. Data Privacy Shield adopted – a phoenix rising from the ashes of Safe Harbour?

The EU-U.S. Privacy Shield has been adopted by the European Commission. On 12 July 2016, following a positive vote from the member states (the Article 31 Committee) on 8 July, the EU College of Commissioners formally adopted...more

7/15/2016 - Article 29 Working Party (WP29) Data Retention EU EU-US Privacy Shield European Commission International Data Transfers Ombudsman Personal Data Popular Schrems v Data Protection Commissioner Self-Certification Standard Contractual Clauses Surveillance U.S. Commerce Department US-EU Safe Harbor Framework

Trade Secrets Directive Adopted by the European Council

Almost three years after its initial proposal, the Trade Secrets Directive has been formally adopted by the European Council and published in the Official Journal on 15 June (2016/943/EU). Member states will have until 9 June...more

7/6/2016 - Confidential Information EU EU Council of Ministers EU Trade Secrets Directive Free Speech Intellectual Property Protection Journalists Remedies Trade Secrets UK Whistleblowers

Draft Privacy Guidelines for Mobile Health App Developers Published

Mobile health or ‘mHealth’ applications commonly raise complex privacy issues as a result of processing large amounts of sensitive personal data. Following the publication of its Green Paper on the topic in 2014, the European...more

7/6/2016 - App Developers Draft Guidance EU EU Data Protection Laws European Commission General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Mobile Health Apps Personal Data

What Brexit Means for Data Protection

For global pharmaceutical and medical device companies handling personal data in the European Union (EU) or engaged in transatlantic data transfers, some of the many questions created by the Brexit vote include what its...more

7/6/2016 - EU EU-US Privacy Shield General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) ICO International Data Transfers Manufacturers Medical Devices Personal Data Pharmaceutical Industry UK UK Brexit UK Data Protection Act

Data Protection in a Post-Brexit Landscape

The United Kingdom’s vote to leave the European Union coincides with a seismic change in data protection law. Once Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty is invoked, there will be a period of two years to complete negotiations and...more

6/29/2016 - Article 50 Treaty of the EU Data Controller EU EU-US Privacy Shield General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) ICO International Data Transfers Personal Data Popular Treaty of Lisbon UK UK Brexit UK Data Protection Act

UK relies on EU Treaty exception to avoid “anti-FISA” data transfers clause in European General Data Protection Regulation...

In a written statement to Parliament, Baroness Neville-Rolfe confirmed the UK Government’s view that the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (“TFEU”) means that Article 48 of the GDPR does not apply to the UK....more

5/25/2016 - Edward Snowden EU Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) International Data Transfers Opt-In Personal Data Surveillance TFEU UK

The Network and Information Security Directive: Serious Cyber Attacks Will Require Notification

The Council of the European Union adopted the EU Network and Information Security (NIS) Directive (the ‘Directive’) 17 May, ready for final adoption by the European Parliament. The Directive, initially proposed in 2013, has...more

5/23/2016 - Critical Infrastructure Sectors Cyber Attacks Cyber Incident Reporting Cyber Threats Cybersecurity Data Breach Digital Service Providers EU EU Council of Ministers General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Member State New Legislation NIS Directive Notice Requirements

Advocate General’s opinion states that IP addresses are Personal Data

On 12 May, the Advocate General’s (AG) opinion in Case C-582/14 Patrick Breyer v Germany was released, stating that dynamic IP addresses should be considered personal data for the purposes of EU data protection law. Although...more

5/20/2016 - Advocate General Data Collection EU EU Data Protection Laws European Court of Justice (ECJ) General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Germany Notice Requirements Personal Data Websites

Galloway v Frazer & Others – A glimpse to the future of data protection litigation

On 27 January, the High Court of Northern Ireland granted British MP George Galloway leave to serve proceedings on Google Inc. out of the jurisdiction. The application was based on a variety of claims including libel,...more

5/18/2016 - Data Controller Data Processors Data Protection Authority EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Google Northern Ireland Online Videos Personal Data UK Data Protection Act YouTube

The European Cloud Initiative: Will Data Protection Requirements Cause Stormy Weather?

The European Commission (EC) recently proposed the European Cloud Initiative (ECI): a plan to create a world-class data infrastructure to store, manage, transport and process data at high speeds. The primary aims are to...more

5/18/2016 - Anonymization Cloud Computing Digital Single Market EU EU Data Protection Laws European Commission General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Infrastructure Personal Data

European Commission Publishes Proposal for Signing the EU-U.S. Umbrella Agreement

The EU-U.S. data protection Umbrella Agreement consists of a framework of principles and safeguards for trans-Atlantic transfers of personal data (such as criminal records, names and addresses) in relation to the prevention,...more

5/18/2016 - Consent Counter-Terrorist Criminal Investigations Data Retention Data Security EU European Commission International Data Transfers Judicial Redress Act Law Enforcement Personal Data Umbrella Agreement

Beyond Bitcoin: Blockchain - The Essential Building Block in Designing the Future

Bitcoin relies on its peer-to-peer network to do two things: maintain the authoritative ledger of transactions and issue new currency. The application of the blockchain is anticipated to extend far beyond financial services...more

5/12/2016 - Bitcoin Blockchain Corporate Counsel EU Financial Sector Popular Regulatory Standards Underwriting Young Lawyers

EU Trade Mark Regulation (EU) 2015/2424 in force

On 23 March 2016, European Union Trade Mark Regulation (EU) 2015/2424 came into force. The new Regulation amends Community Trade Mark Regulation 207/2009/EC, and makes a number of procedural and substantive changes to EU...more

5/5/2016 - Community Trademark Customs EU European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) European Union Trade Mark (EUTM) Intellectual Property Protection New Guidance New Regulations OHIM Trademark Infringement Trademarks

Turkish Parliament Enacts New Data Protection Law

In a step toward its accession to the EU, Turkey has enacted its first comprehensive Data Protection Law. The law was passed by the Turkish Parliament 24 March and published in the Official Gazette 7 April....more

5/5/2016 - Data Controller Data Processors Data Protection EU EU Data Protection Laws International Data Transfers New Legislation Personal Data Prior Express Consent Turkey

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