Cloudy with a Chance of Clearing: U.S. CLOUD Act and European Response

8 May 2018
View Debevoise Update
Key takeaways:
  • Recently adopted U.S. Clarifying Lawful Overseas Use of Data Act (“CLOUD Act”) and the draft EU regulation on sharing electronic evidence (“e-Evidence Regulation”) signal a potential change in the approach to cross-border data transfer for law enforcement purposes.
  • The CLOUD Act creates a new mechanism for U.S. and foreign law enforcement agencies to request data located abroad from providers of electronic communications and remote computing services. The e-Evidence Regulation, if enacted, provides an analogous process for law enforcement agencies in the EU Member States.
  • Both would allow targets of law enforcement to challenge requests on the basis of conflict with foreign law.
  • These developments suggest that legislators on both sides of the Atlantic may be slowly moving towards a more harmonized approach to foreign data collection, which would benefit companies often caught in the middle of conflicting U.S. and EU legal demands.