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BSA Welcomes EU Updates to Standard Contractual Clauses

BRUSSELS – June 4, 2021 – BSA | The Software Alliance welcomes the formal adoption today of new Standard Contractual Clauses (SCCs) for data transfers between EU and non-EU countries, offering the following statement.

“SCCs provide a vital privacy-protective mechanism used by millions of companies, governments, and organizations, in Europe and worldwide, that transfer data out of the EU,” said Thomas Boué, Director General – Policy, EMEA at BSA. “Nearly 90 percent of companies transferring data out of the EU rely on SCCs to do so, in full respect of European privacy rules.”

“The new SCCs do three important things: they ensure consistency with the CJEU’s Schrems II decision and the GDPR, they reflect the realities of the digital economy, and they provide businesses—of all sizes, across every sector—with greater legal certainty, ultimately helping them operate, innovate, and compete,” said Boué. “The Commission’s updates account for all types of transfers, depending on the circumstances, and recognizes the role of appropriate supplementary safeguards where needed. BSA has long advocated that additional safeguards be applied on a case-by-case basis, according to the specific condition of each transfer. The Commission’s updates provide additional protective measures and make SCCs more flexible, both of which are positive developments.”

At the same time, organizations will have to assess the level of data protection in third countries and develop, as appropriate, supplementary safeguards on a case-by-case basis for each transfer. In this regard—and to ensure legal clarity and consistency for all organizations relying on SCCs for data transfers—official, uniform, and common information on the level of data protection in third countries would be helpful.

“Maintaining stable and secure mechanisms for data transfers is essential to the success of Europe’s digital transformation, economic growth, and the global economy more broadly,” Boué added. “The ability to maintain privacy and security is core to BSA members’ business strategies. We look forward to continuing to work with policymakers and a broad range of stakeholders to instill trust in the digital economy and data responsibility.”


BSA | The Software Alliance (www.bsa.org) is the leading advocate for the global software industry before governments and in the international marketplace. Its members are among the world’s most innovative companies, creating software solutions that help businesses of all sizes in every part of the economy to modernize and grow.

With headquarters in Washington, DC, and operations in more than 30 countries, BSA pioneers compliance programs that promote legal software use and advocates for public policies that foster technology innovation and drive growth in the digital economy.


Michael O’Brien

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