Google is facing issues around the world with its Google Analytics product, which authorities are considering banning the tool. Regulators believe the platform allows U.S. intelligence agencies to access user data. In response, Google is calling for a framework of data sharing between Europe and the United States.
Austria through its Data Protection Authority (DPA) has found local sites that use Google Analytics are falling foul of GDPR regulations. DPA argues U.S. agencies can use the tool to access user information without permission. Dutch regulators are taking a similar stance and other EU nations are likely to follow.
Google believes creating a shared EU-US data transfer framework is the only solution to conflicting data regulations.
The company points out businesses now operate on a global scale and data sharing is fundamental to their success and impact on local economies. Looking at the EU, Google predicts billions of euros will flood the economy in coming years from media and information data services.
As Google Analytics gets heat, it is easy to think Google is trying to cover itself. However, the company says it has never received a request from U.S. intelligence services over 15 years of operating the platform. Furthermore, Google says it does not envision any such request for Analytics data.
The company insists laws in place are robust enough to prevent this happening. To avoid confusion, Google wants a data transfer framework as soon as possible.
“The stakes are too high — and international trade between Europe and the U.S. too important to the livelihoods of millions of people — to fail at finding a prompt solution to this imminent problem.
A durable framework — one that provides stability for companies offering valuable services in Europe — will help everyone, at a critical moment for our economies. A new framework will bolster the transatlantic relationship, ensure the stability of transatlantic commerce, help businesses of all sizes to participate in the global digital economy, and avoid potentially serious disruptions of supply chains and transatlantic trade. And it will assure continued protection of people’s right to privacy on both sides of the Atlantic.
We strongly support an accord, and have for many years supported reasonable rules governing government access to user data. We have long advocated for government transparency, lawful processes, and surveillance reform. We were the first major company to create a Transparency Report on government requests for user data, were founding members of the Global Network Initiative and the Reform Government Surveillance coalition, and support the OECD’s workstream on government access to data. At this juncture, we urge both governments to take a flexible and aligned approach to resolving this important issue.”
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