Judicial Redress Act Letter
Dear Chairman Goodlatte:
On behalf of our more than 80 member companies who build and maintain the infrastructure of the Internet, we thank you for your support of H.R.1428, the Judicial Redress Act of 2015.
Since Edward Snowden’s revelation of widespread and warrantless surveillance by the National Security Agency (NSA) in 2013, the U.S. digital infrastructure sector, that is so critical to our economy, has seen a decline in international trust. The effects of this have been far-reaching, burdening American businesses – many of which are losing customers every day and facing additional strains because of unnecessarily intrusive surveillance by the U.S. government. While passage of the USA FREEDOM Act, which helped put an end to the egregious domestic bulk data collection by the NSA, was a critical step forward, there is more work to be done.
One of the most profound effects of the NSA revelations has been the significant erosion of trust between the U.S. and members of the European Union, particularly, the “safe harbor” framework that undergirds the ability of businesses to send massive amounts of data and remain in compliance with EU privacy laws. The U.S. and EU have been in negotiations for years over how to improve the framework for data transfers between law enforcement agencies in the United States and Europe (“the umbrella agreement”), and the Judicial Redress Act will finally provide a comprehensive solution. As a result, the Department of Justice and federal law enforcement agencies have firmly supported the bill.
Improving transatlantic data transfers and offering the citizens of U.S. ally states the right to U.S. judicial recourse is a big step forward in restoring international trust and ensuring American businesses have the means to further promote innovation, better serve consumers and continue to robustly contribute to the U.S. economy.
The Judicial Redress Act will go a long way in building on the USA FREEDOM Act and restoring global confidence in the U.S. Internet infrastructure sector, and the U.S. technology industry as a whole. Under the U.S. Privacy Act, American citizens can contest misuse of personal data collected by U.S. law enforcement agencies in court. This helps ensure that the information collected and used by these law enforcement agencies is accurate.
By extending U.S. judicial recourse to the citizens of designated U.S. allies, most notably to European Union Member States, international consumers will feel more comfortable sharing their information transatlantically. For international digital trade in which American businesses rely on the free-flowing of transnational data, this bill is crucial to mending the relationship between American businesses and international consumers and restoring trust that these businesses will keep this data secure.
This legislation will also ensure greater cooperation among international law enforcement agencies, encouraging these nations to share critical law enforcement information with one another.
On behalf of the i2Coalition member companies – large and small –, we believe the Judicial Redress Act of 2015 takes vital steps forward to ensure the continued competitiveness of U.S. businesses and we urge the House to quickly pass this legislation.
Christian Dawson, Chairman & Co-Founder
David Snead, Chair, Public Policy Working Group & Co-Founder