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Recent high profile security incidents illustrate that no institution or business is immune from cyber attack. A cyber attack on the White House in 2014 resulted in a partial shutdown of its email system. In a reported attempt to extort money from the ECB, email addresses and other user contact information were stolen in 2014. Confidential movie scripts and emails about staff and movie stars were released as part of the 2014 Sony hack. Already this year, the Carphone Warehouse security breach in early August and the more recent Ashley Madison hack have received extensive media coverage.


Continue Reading Cyber risk – the legal landscape

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Model Contracts are standard contractual clauses for the transfer of personal data outside the EU/EEA which have been approved by the European Commission.  They have been approved on the basis that they provide sufficient safeguards for privacy, fundamental rights and the exercise of those rights.  To date two sets of standard contractual clauses for the transfer of personal data outside the EU/EEA from data controllers to data controllers and one set for transfers from data controllers to data processors have been approved by the Commission.

Continue Reading Transfer Tools Post Schrems: EU Data Protection Authorities’ Common Position on Model Contacts

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The Office of the Data Protection Commissioner is to get a €1.2m increase in funding for 2016. Minister for European Affairs and Data Protection, Dara Murphy announced the measure, under Budget 2016, and said that the increased resources are bring provided to "ensure that Ireland continues to have an excellent regulatory and enforcement regime for data protection, and that we are fully equipped to adapt to the ever-increasing pace of change in the digital economy".

Continue Reading Government announces €1.2m increase in funding for the Office of the Data Protection Commissioner

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As has been reported widely in the world media, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) this week declared the EU-US Safe Harbour regime to be invalid. The decision has understandably given rise to a lot of concern among European businesses that transfer data to the US.

In this blog post, we seek to answer the main questions that are being asked following the CJEU ruling.

Continue Reading Data in Disarray: The Aftermath of the Safe Harbour Decision

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The Advocate General, Yves Bot, of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) last week delivered his opinion in the Maximillian Schrems v Data Protection Commissioner Case, C362/14 (the Opinion). The Opinion, which is advisory in nature, recommends that the Safe Harbour programme be invalidated and that the Irish Data Protection Commissioner (the DPC) be empowered to carry out a full investigation as to the adequacy of protection afforded to the personal data of Facebook’s EU users. 

Continue Reading Safe Harbour in Danger?

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The Office of the Data Protection Commissioner (ODPC) participated in the third Global Privacy Enforcement Network (GPEN) Privacy “Sweep” (the Sweep) which took place between 11th and 15th May 2015. The aim of the Sweep was to examine the data privacy practices of websites and apps aimed at or popular among children.

Continue Reading GPEN Privacy Sweep 2015 raises Concerns over Children’s Apps

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On 14 September 2015, Minister of State for International Financial Services Simon Harris TD launched the FPAI, a new trade association founded to further the interests of stakeholders involved in the rapidly evolving Irish FinTech sector.  

FinTech (financial technology) is the term used to describe any technology applied to financial services. Across the broad spectrum of FinTech products available, everyday examples include mobile banking, peer to peer lending, digital currency (e.g. Bitcoin), crowdfunding (e.g. Kickstarter) and online payments systems (e.g. Stripe).

Continue Reading Minister for International Financial Services launches FinTech and Payments Association of Ireland (FPAI)

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The High Court has refused an application by the Irish Times for injunctions restraining the Times of London from using the words "The Times Irish Edition" in its forthcoming digital Irish edition of the newspaper. The new digital publication will be sold as a part of a subscription package with the Sunday Times and will be solely available digitally. The Irish Times had sought an injunction preventing Times Newspapers Limited (TNL) from using the "The Times Irish Edition" or any other title which may be confusingly similar to The Irish Times. TNL denied that the phrase would create any confusion due to the co-existence of the two publications in Ireland for 150 years as well as the fact that it was common knowledge that they intended to launch an Irish edition.

Continue Reading High Court refuses injunction over Irish edition of the UK Times