EC Approves Clauses for International Data Transfers

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The Federation of European Direct & Interactive Marketing said Friday that companies will be able to provide a legal basis for transfers of business data to data controllers outside Europe as of April 1, following the European Commission's approval of standard contractual clauses for digital data transfers.

The EC approved the clauses for data transfers proposed by seven international business associations. EC approval was issued Dec. 27.

Approval of the business associations' clauses came after four years of negotiation. It marks the first time the EC officially approved a mechanism for data transfers proposed by the private sector.

The associations are: The American Chamber of Commerce to the European Union in Brussels; Confederation of British Industry; European Information, Communications and Consumer Electronics Technology Industry Associations; Federation of European Direct and Interactive Marketing; International Chamber of Commerce; International Communication Round Table; and the Japan Business Council in Europe.

Christopher Kuner, chairman of the International Chamber of Commerce's Task Force on Privacy and the Protection of Personal Data, said the clauses provide several advantages for companies over the EC's previous clauses. For example, he said, they do not require the data exporter and data importer to be liable for each other's misuse of the data, as the EC's previous clauses had done.

The text of the clauses, along with a list of some of their advantages over the EC's previous clauses, can be found on these sites:,,,,, and

Melissa Campanelli covers postal news, CRM and database marketing for DM News and To keep up with the latest developments in these areas, subscribe to our daily and weekly e-mail newsletters by visiting


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