Further to the judgment issued by the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) on 6 October 2015 in the Max Schrems v. Data Protection Commissioner case (C-362/14) finding the European Commission’s decision on Safe Harbour invalid, the Polish Inspector General for Personal Data Protection [Generalny Inspektor Ochrony Danych Osobowych – GIODO) has issued a statement on the application of Safe Harbour by Polish entities transferring data to third countries.
GIODO referred to a press statement issued by the Article 29 Working Party (Working Party) on 16 October 2015 and said that, in GIODO’s view, the deadline set by the Working Party by which entities have to cease using Safe Harbour (i.e. the end of January 2016) means that entrepreneurs are at present obliged to ensure that they have other legal grounds for transferring data to third countries. In GIODO’s view, the term set by the Working Party should be treated as the last date on which the data protection authorities will not impose penalties in connection with enforcement of the CJEU judgment.
Consequently, GIODO announced that, despite this deadline, it will react to appeals concerning the application of Safe Harbour, even if they are filed before 1 February 2016. GIODO said that the CJEU had not opted to defer the effects of the judgment in the Safe Harbour case and thus as of the judgment date the transfer of personal data based on Safe Harbour is unlawful.