Greetings from the Nordics,
The night of the midnight sun is over. We are heading towards the end of summer and into autumn.
It is not unusual during the best holiday season in the Nordics for something big to happen in privacy. This year was no exception.
On 10 July, the European Commission adopted a long-awaited adequacy decision on data transfers under the EU-U.S. Data Privacy Framework. This was extremely good news for many of us who have struggled with this issue for the past few years.
Most of the discussion on international data transfers has been about the U.S., for obvious reasons. But we should remember many other countries are facing the same challenges. On Wednesday of this week, Finland's data protection authority, the Office of the Data Protection Ombudsman, temporarily banned Yango taxi service from transferring personal data from Finland to Russia. The ban is necessary due to legislative reform in Russia that allows the Federal Security Service of the Russian Federation to receive data processed in taxi operations. The taxi application may collect data on a customer's location and the address of the taxi ride. Yango operates in Finland and Norway, and their DPAs cooperated closely with the Netherlands DPA, Autoriteit Persoonsgegevens, as a service provider of the Yango application is located there.
Head of International Section for Norway's DPA, Datatilsynet, Tobias Judin, told local news NRK use of the Yango application should stop immediately. Judin specifically warned individuals in both public and private sector leading positions that their personal data could be used for blackmailing purposes by the Russian authorities.
The Nordic DPAs have also been busy with several other interesting cases over the past months and I encourage you to read their websites where some can be found in English.
We also have had many reasons to celebrate. Sweden's DPA, the Integritetsskyddsmyndigheten, and its national data protection laws are celebrating their 50th anniversary this year, so there is a lot to be proud of.
And, in late May, the European Data Protection Board elected Data Protection Ombudsman of Finland Anu Talus as its new chair. It makes us in the Nordics, and especially in Finland, very proud to have one of us representing the board, both in Europe and elsewhere. Congratulations Anu, one more time!
After a relaxing and sunny holiday season we are ready to roll up our sleeves!
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