HM Treasury has issued new guidance on what UK firms need to do to ensure continued legal data flows between themselves and other organisations in the EU/EEA after the end of the Brexit transition period.
The guidance is specifically relevant to firms who operate in the European Economic Area (EEA) or who receive and/or transfer personal data to or from organisations abroad, including those within the EEA (which includes the EU).
By 1 January 2021, the Treasury emphasises, firms will need to have put an alternative transfer mechanism in place with their EU/EEA counterparts to ensure that they can keep personal data flowing lawfully from them.
In the meantime the EU is conducting an assessment on the UK’s data protection regime. If this assessment reaches a positive conclusion before 1 January, then personal data can continue to flow freely between EEA countries and the UK without the need for further action.
With time fast running out fast and no decision made, however, the Treasury warns firms they must work with EU/EEA organisations from whom they receive personal data to put alternative transfer mechanisms in place. Typically this would take the form of Standard Contractual Clauses (SCCs).
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