Reed Smith Launches DaTA Transfer Pathway Tool

Global law firm Reed Smith has launched DaTA Transfer Pathway, a homemade automated data transfer tool, designed to help organisations comply with recent changes in EU case law and data protection rules.

Before transferring personal data outside the EU, all businesses now need to undertake a data transfer impact assessment. And of course, the UK’s Brexit from Europe only makes this more complicated. So, to help with this, Reed Smith’s DaTA Transfer Pathway tool provides the automated generation of data transfer assessment reports and Standard Contractual Clauses (SCCs) in accordance with the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

The tool can also be used to cover onward data transfers between non-EU organisations that must comply with the SCCs. In most cases businesses are likely to need to change their contractual arrangement with customers, suppliers and affiliates to ensure compliance with the new rules, the firm said. The deadline to change to the new SCCs is December 27, 2022.

The need to cover this follows the Court of Justice of the European Union’s (CJEU) Schrems II decision relating to EU-US data transfers and in light of the new EU-Standard Contractual Clauses (SCCs).

(Note: it’s interesting to see that the EU is actually setting out standard clauses in this area. Standardisation is growing…. although, after having a look at them, they are a long way from the easy utility of something like the OneNDA. They may be ‘standard’, but they remain complex. But still, it’s another move toward standardisation.)

Now, back to the tool. In more detail, this is what the DaTA Transfer Pathway is able to do:

  • Guide the user through a step-by-step series of questions.
  • Navigate complex data-sharing scenarios, for example where there are several service providers involved either within Europe or outside it.
  • Conduct a data transfer assessment for the user (as required under Clause 14 of the SCCs), identifying the supplementary measures which can then be included in the data transfer tools.
  • And, build an optional data transfer agreement where the SCCs automatically generate the required modules, with the annexes automatically populated from the answers to the data transfer assessment.

The tool can be used not just by legal or data protection staff, but also by non-legal staff, such as procurement or marketing teams, the firm added.

Cynthia O’Donoghue, a London-based partner at Reed Smith, who has been working on the project along with several other lawyers and the firm’s Innovation group, said: ‘The Schrems II ruling combined with the new EU-Standard Contractual Clauses has a far reaching impact for all businesses that are transferring personal data outside of the EU.

‘Given the requirements to conduct a data transfer assessment and to repaper the old SCCs for the new within a very short timeframe, we created DaTA Transfer Pathway to make the process fast and easy for our clients.’

While, Andreas Splittgerber, Munich-based partner at Reed Smith, added: ‘We very pleased to be able to offer our clients this user friendly and effective tool to help them navigate the latest update to the EU’s data transfer rules.’

Providing tools to help clients with data needs is looking like a growth area. For example, Clifford Chance’s Applied Solutions group also launched Cross-Border Publisher: Data Protection, a product that delivers expert information on 78 data protection questions across 17 jurisdictions in Europe.