EU not ready to award India 'data secure' status

An EU-commissioned study has found gaps in the adequacy of India's system, which could prompt legislative changes in order for Indian outsourcing firms to continue their European business.

The European Union Justice Department has indicated a joint expert dialogue group needs to be set up in order to move along India's application for "data secure" status .

An Indian Commerce Department official told The Hindu on June 15 that legislative changes could be required to meet the EU's data security requirements, which govern where data belonging to local companies can be hosted.

EU not ready to award India 'data secure' status.

"The recent communication from the EU Justice Department is worrying for us as it indicates that the EU is not willing to offer us data secure status till we make changes in our systems. This could take a long time as it may also require legislative changes," the Commerce Department official told Business Line.

The official noted it was very clear that the EU was not in any hurry to award India the data secure status.
Without the status, Indian outsourcing firms will not be allowed to host and manage certain types of data belonging to companies based in the EU. The status is also a key requirement by the EU in ongoing bilateral free trade negotiations with India.

The EU's Justice Department had asked consultants to assess the data adequacy of the Indian system . While the study has not yet been handed over to India, it is believed to have identified gaps in Indian data laws.

It therefore wants a joint dialogue between relevant stakeholders, on both sides, to outline India's path to approval.