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9 October 2019

UK and US sign landmark Data Access Agreement

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By Sangeeta Bedi

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The UK and US governments have recently signed a new bilateral agreement designed to obtain data from ESPs more quickly.

Commenting on this development, Partner Andrew Smith stated: “The US-UK data access agreement is an important step in facilitating the speedy transfer of electronic data in cross-border criminal investigations. In years gone by, it could take months and sometimes years for requests to be processed under mutual legal assistance treaties. This was plainly inadequate when investigating fast-moving crimes, particularly those involving an imminent risk of further harm.

“This agreement, together with the overseas production order, is also a powerful signal to the major US tech giants. If they are unable to police themselves for extremist content, or to ensure that vulnerable users are not abused, the evidence of the crimes committed using their technology will now be made accessible to UK law enforcement as quickly as possible. It is entirely possible that today’s agreement will become the template for similar agreements with other countries around the world.”

Andrew Smith has previously written a blog on Overseas Production Orders. To read the article please click here. 

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