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Awkward. Investigatory Powers Act could prove hurdle to UK-EU Privacy Shield following Brexit

Whitehall can't even convince UK it's not watching everything we do

By John Leyden, 3 Mar 2017

UK surveillance laws could be an obstacle to the creation of a US-Europe Privacy Shield-style arrangement post-Brexit.

The issue came up during testimony by Sir Julian King, EU Commissioner for the Security Union, at a Home Affairs select committee hearing on Tuesday.

Once Brexit happens, the UK will have to set up something similar to recently established US-Europe agreements to allow UK-based firms to process EU citizens' data.

The UK will have have to convince the EU that there will no indiscriminate mass collection of data, among other measures, Sir Julian King said. An SNP MP asked how this squares with the the Investigatory Powers Act, the UK's recently updated surveillance law.

Independent infosec consultant Brian Honan, the founder and head of Ireland's CERT, told El Reg that a UK-Europe Privacy Shield will "probably be necessary" following Brexit.

It will take time to get it right unless the UK is deemed an approved third-party country, according to Honan, who added that the "IP Bill could scupper that".

Intelligence sharing will continue in a framework outside of ‪Brexit‬, Sir Julian King told the Home Affairs Select Committee.

Shared threat and shared benefit means that co-operation on security and counter-terrorism are likely to continue after ‪Brexit‬, he added. ®

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