Safe Harbor Certification

Safe Harbor Certification

 

What is Safe Harbor?

The European Commission's Directive on Data Protection went into effect in October of 1998, and would prohibit the transfer of personal data to non-European Union nations that do not meet the European "adequacy" standard for privacy protection. While the United States and the European Union share the goal of enhancing privacy protection for their citizens, the United States takes a different approach to privacy from that taken by the European Union.

In order to bridge these different privacy approaches and provide a streamlined means for U.S. organizations to comply with the Directive, the U.S. Department of Commerce in consultation with the European Commission developed a "Safe Harbor" framework and this website to provide the information an organization should need to evaluate - and then join - the Safe Harbor.

Similarly, the U.S. Department of Commerce in consultation with the Federal Data Protection and Information Commission of Switzerland developed a "Safe Harbor" framework to bridge the different privacy approaches between the two countries and provide a streamlined means for U.S. organizations to comply with the Swiss data protection law.


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