Press release – Bordeaux, 26th November 2015
Following rejection of the Safe Harbor agreement, AT Internet analyses impact and affirms its Analytics Suite’s total compliance with EU legislation
AT Internet, major player in the field of digital intelligence, responds to the European Court of Justice’s decision to invalidate the Safe Harbor agreement, per the 6 October 2015 ruling that the European Commission’s Decision 2000/520/EC of 26 July 2000 does not respect personal data privacy regulations.
AT Internet affirms that its data privacy policies respect the requirements of the European Commission’s Directive on Data Protection, as data collected and processed via the AT Internet solution is stored exclusively on French soil. Therefore, European companies using AT Internet’s solution are automatically compliant with this directive, as opposed to companies who transmit their data to the United States via other analytics tools.
What is the Safe Harbor agreement?
The Safe Harbor agreement is the result of the European Commission’s Decision of 26 July 2000, conform to the European Parliament and Council Directive 95/46/EC (24 October 1995) and regarding the “adequate protection” provided by US Department of Commerce’s Safe Harbor Privacy Principles. Until now, the Safe Harbor framework permitted the transfer of European Union citizens’ personal data towards the United States, considering that the United States ensured a sufficient level of protection.
What are the major restrictions now imposed on users of digital analytics solutions?
The European directive requires companies using American digital analytics technologies to obtain authorisation from each of their EU-citizen customers whose data will be processed in the United States.
How is AT Internet different from the majority of digital analytics providers?
AT Internet offers a maximum level of protection to its customers, illustrated by several points:
- 100% European service provider : Storage, back-up and protection of processed data is done only on proprietary servers based in France.
- Completely transparent approach to privacy and data protection: France’s CNIL recommends AT Internet for its conformity to cookie regulations.
- TÜV certification: German entity TÜV Saarland certifies that AT Internet’s data collection and processing procedures conform to data privacy and protection norms.
- Unique position in the digital analytics market: AT Internet is the only European group among the industry leaders, as outlined in this report from Forrester Research, Inc. (“The Forrester WaveTM: Web Analytics, Q2 2014”). This “leader” position guarantees the highest levels of performance and strict respect of EU legislation.
Mathieu Llorens, AT Internet CEO, says: “The ruling of Safe Harbor as ‘invalid’ should enable greater protection of European users by reviving negotiations about the necessary alignment of French and American practices. In light of all this, we want to reassure our European customers who, as always, can count on the guarantees and certifications made possible by our France-based hosting infrastructures, as well as our presence as an independent entity focused exclusively on analytics.”
White paper to be published in early 2016
AT Internet is currently developing a joint white paper with Aurélie Pols, international expert in data protection and privacy issues in the digital analytics industry. The white paper’s objective is to comprehensively assess the topic and help marketing professionals sufficiently evaluate their current situation, thanks to best practices and recommendations on tools that conform to current legislation. Aurélie Pols adds: “Safe Harbor has always been a weak link when it comes to respecting recognised privacy rights of EU citizens, even more so as the digital analytics industry is moving towards increased customer centricity! It took Edward Snowden and an Austrian law student to declare it illegal. This invalidation by the European Court of Justice, together with other issues our industry is facing such as AdBlockers and data quality, should resonate as a sounding board to do a better job at finding the right balance between data-driven decision-making and respecting users’ privacy wishes. All actors involved within the digital data ecosystem have a role to play: It’s basically a chain of responsibility. More specifically, analytics vendors are today faced with the challenge of rolling out adequate privacy features for their customers, allowing them to, in turn, respect their users’ rights.”
For more information, please see the European Court of Justice’s official press release.
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