Reply to post: Re: America's increasing isolation (@ AC)

Thought your data was safe outside America after the Microsoft ruling? Think again

Anonymous Coward
Anonymous Coward

Re: America's increasing isolation (@ AC)

But the laws invoked in this case and the Patriot Act where put in place during Dubya's mandate and before, so, where is your point?

As much as I would like to lay this one at Bush's feet, this case would have come to the same conclusion even years before the PATRIOT Act because it's about the reach of what is laughingly referred to as US "justice". The problem is that a US company has control over its subsidiaries. The thinking is that if you own it, you control it. If you control it, you can make it happen, and that's really all the Court needs to know to come to a verdict. To US Courts it's pretty much irrelevant if by acting as ordered you break a law in another country, as long as that does not break a US law it's not their problem.

In other words, under NO circumstances should you ever host something important with a US company or its subsidiaries because you put it in reach of a regime that has displayed an increasingly hostile stance to privacy and the protection of Intellectual Property of aliens (that's "foreigners" for anyone not in the US).

This has another fun side effect: it is pretty certain to switch off the life support for the badly ailing Privacy Shield excuse. If you're interested in privacy, the next few months are going to get very entertaining - it is, for instance, the only route to legalise the use of Gmail for business for any organisation located in the EU, and that's a LOT of business. I don't know what would happen after Brexit, but it would remove that last shred of doubt that the (IMHO idiotic) use of Gmail by Cabinet Office and the Digital division of HMRC is illegal, and it would put those nice data grabbing exercises by Google off the NHS pretty much on the skids too.

All that from one ruling? Well, no, but to me it both confirms a long held opinion and sets a precedent that has the potential to indeed turn *very* ugly as it establishes a neat argument for "EU First" (as a reaction to "America first") when it comes to purchasing online services.

In effect, you have just seen the start of the first trade conflict between the EU and the US, and the UK will have to make a choice soon too: your rights, or the rights of US companies to steal more data. Given May's history at the Home Office as well as the need to score some "wins" for Brexit I suspect that such a choice will fall out in favour of the US. Best plan ahead.

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