The European Parliament’s Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs adopted an own-initiative Report yesterday condemning the EU-US Privacy Shield as dysfunctional and unsecure.

Axel Voss MEP, the EPP Group’s Spokesman on the topic, commented: “The EPP Group called for more time to negotiate critical points in the Resolution, especially those calling the level of protection provided by the framework inadequate and those blaming the US for the mass surveillance of citizens. Not having been heard out, we had no choice but to vote against. However, the tight results of the vote on both the final text and our request to postpone the vote proves that a significant number of MEPs do not agree with the very negative assessment of the current functioning of the Privacy Shield. Therefore, we are going to continue working towards a balanced Resolution at plenary level. We must make it clear that the Privacy Shield functions properly, safely and brings benefits to European SMEs which avoids lengthy negotiations with their trade partners on the other side of Atlantic on how to transfer personal data necessary for their business.”

Just a few months ago, a thorough review by the European Commission clearly concluded that data of citizens on both sides of the Atlantic are safe under the Privacy Shield and that it cuts administrative burdens for almost 3,000 companies which voluntarily registered as part of the framework.

Voss added: “Regardless of the EPP Group’s great effort for constructive negotiations, the draft Resolution denies all existing, well-developed and thoroughly examined mechanisms on which the Privacy Shield is based. With such a text, the Socialists, Greens and Liberals are undermining the essential basis for the functioning of a tool which benefits thousands of European companies and protects the data of European citizens. The question we must ask is: would revoking the Privacy Shield really benefit anyone?”